Hayward Fault Earthquake Could Be Worse Than Katrina

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In case you're one of those who has become numb to the constant beating drum about the importance of earthquake preparedness, here's another warning: a recently released report by the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics says the Big One on the Hayward fault could wreak even more economic havoc than Hurricane Katrina. The researchers used wage and seismic hazard data to produce their findings. According to the report: "The Hayward Fault underlies Alameda County, a heavily populated urban area in northern California that is home to 41,000 employers, 682,000 employees, and a total quarterly payroll of $9.3 billion. In addition, Alameda County lies over approximately three-fourths of the length of the fault and therefore faces the greatest potential exposure to a damaging earthquake occurring on the fault. Geologists estimate that the fault has a 27-percent chance of experiencing a seismic event by 2032."

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