Recent years earthquake strikes have become to pose a lot of danger to people and impact the economy negatively. It is an undeniable fact that preventing earthquakes from happening seems impossible, yet it is possible to eliminate their negative outcomes for people. Government with the help of public and private organizations have been investigating for decades to find the solution to decrease the harmful effects of the earthquakes. Nowadays with the help of earthquake early warning systems, individuals will be notified about the forthcoming earthquake before shaking. These kind of warning systems are especially beneficial for the areas that are more vulnerable to shocks. One of the warning systems that is called SkyAlert will be earthquake warning for Bay Area. The following article explains why the Bay Area needs a warning system and how these systems help to reduce negative earthquake outcomes.
About the Bay Area
Although Bay Area is considered as one of the beautiful places to live, citizens in the area are concerned about the dangerous ground shakings that pose severe risks to their life. One of the destructive earthquakes that happened in 1906 caused a vast amount of destructions and ended with the death of approximately 3000 citizens. From that time the Bay Area has witnessed other dangerous and destructive strikes that caused both economic and human loss. Because more than seven dangerous fault zones are located in the area including San Andreas Fault, Calaveras, Hayward, the Bay Area needs an earthquake warning system.
People who live in the area experience small non-destructive and dangerous earthquakes frequently and suffer a lot from the consequences of the quakes. Additionally, scientists warn people about the forthcoming destructive earthquake with at least a magnitude of 6.7. According to them, approximately with 70% probability Bay Area will face several earthquakes with the magnitude of 7 within two decades.
Therefore, there is an essential need for earthquake warning for Bay Area to help people to take action before earthquake strikes. Earthquake warning in Bay Area will notify people a few seconds before about coming earthquake. Moreover, the earthquake early warning app also will provide information about the magnitude and duration of the quake and offer a chance for people to save their lives and their family members’ life.
How does it work?
To notify users precisely about the earthquake, hundreds of sensors are located near the geological faults. When an earthquake happens, the sensors receive waves coming from the quake and passes them to the data center. There exist two kinds of waves coming from epicenter which are P and S signals. First coming waves are S waves that usually contain informative information about the small quake, yet P waves inform scientists about dangerous earthquakes. These waves carry information about the source, epicenter location of the quake. After receiving and analyzing data, scientists transmit critical signals to users’ mobile phones via SkyAlert early warning app. Earthquake time may vary according to the user location. If the user is far away from the epicenter of the earthquake, it means he has more time to take action than the user that is near the epicenter.
At first sight, the working structure of earthquake early warning app seems straightforward, yet they rely on complex structure to pass the timely notification to the users so that they could have time to protect their life. Seismic network stations near the epicenters should transfer the signals to the local network centers. Local networks collect data from several seismic stations, analyze them and make a decision about notifying the user or not. Each described step takes time,and to inform users about the forthcoming earthquake each step should take place fast.
Initial Tests on SkyAlert App
The earthquake warning in Bay Area that is supported by SkyAlert App will be ready soon. The app is one of the most suitable warning apps for users and provides them with several significant information including epicenter, duration, and magnitude of the earthquake. Additionally, the user can connect its profile to the Facebook messenger so that he could notify his friends and family members about the forthcoming quake. App also provides beneficial information for users about how they should act before the earthquake when they receive the notification and also what kind of actions are dangerous for their lives during the earthquake. The early warning app takes its real-time data from United States Geological Survey.
Initial experiments on SkyAlert app has been completed successfully, and the app will be ready soon for the users who live in Washington, Los Angeles, and Oregon. The prototype system has already experimented and passed all the required tests. The number and usage of early earthquake early warning are increasing, and functionality is getting better by the time. On 30th of the November, the app helped school teacher to get notification about the incoming earthquake. As a result, app prevented human loss as schoolchildren were carried away from the school building to a safe place.
Why the Bay Area needs early warning app?
As mentioned before, the Bay Area is one of the areas that has faced both small and destructive earthquakes and caused a lot of human loss for decades. According to scientists, the area is vulnerable to dangerous shocks rather than the small ones. Starting from 1835 till 1911 there have been more than 15 hazardous earthquakes with at least magnitude of 6 in the Bay Area. Years between 1911 and 1979 were quiet for the Bay Area people as there were no destructive earthquakes. However, starting from 1979 Bay Area faced next four dangerous quakes with the approximate magnitude of 7.
Now, scientists predict that earthquake movements are similar to the 1835-1991 earthquakes and according to them, there is 80 percent probability that within 30 years Bay Area will experience destructive earthquakes with the magnitude of 7. Therefore, people in Bay Area should possess the warning system so that they can protect their life. Even getting notification several seconds before the quake could help to save hundreds of individuals’ life. Earthquake warning of Bay Area can save the life of hundreds of people, and switch off electrical power supplies and gas shuffles during earthquake.
Which features will be provided by warning app?
SkyAlert earthquake warning for Bay Area will be beneficial for several reasons for the people. Initially, after receiving a warning signal from the app, there will be time to evacuate people to safe places. Secondly, individuals will be emotionally ready for the earthquake. In the warning app, real-time earthquake movements will be provided to people through the map. While the green colour in the map demonstrates the small quakes, red ones will warn users about coming dangerous earthquake.
Moreover, users will be able to transfer the information about earthquake via connecting their app with different social media apps. The app will send a notification to the users in case of an earthquake with more than 4.0 magnitude. Additionally, with the help of the warning app users will learn how to act before and during the earthquake. It will give the option to create a circle between several people so that during a shock these people could share their location and send a message about their safety to each member of the circle. Additionally, urgent calling and message will be available in the app for the users.