Scientists are alarmed since the discovery of mash-up of two natural disasters. These disasters are hurricanes and earthquakes, and scientists are calling it “Stromquakes.” The shaking of sea bed caused because of hurricanes and nor’easters can rumble like earthquake of 3.5 magnitudes, and it can last for days as well. This study was published in the journal of Geophysical Research Letters this week. Wenyuan Fan is the study’s lead author, and he is a seismologist at Florida State University. He stated that stromquake is more than an oddity, and it is something that cannot hurt you as, during a hurricane, no one is standing on the ocean floor.
Stromquake is combination of two frightening natural calamities and although, it might remind of “Sharknado”, but actually it is real and not dangerous at all. Fan told the press that stromquake is the last thing that people need to worry about. Strom triggers giant waves in the ocean, which further causes another type of wave. These secondary waves interact with the seafloor but only on specific places, which causes shaking of ocean floor. Further, Fan stated that this effect only occurs at the places with shallow flat land and the large continental shelf.
Fan’s team discovered nearly 14,077 stormquakes that occur in between September 2006 and February 2015. These stromquakes were spotted in the Gulf of Mexico, off Florida, Nova Scotia, New England, Labrador, Newfoundland, and British Columbia. Fan mentioned that a special type of military sensor is needed to spot them. Further study suggests that hurricane Ike in the year 2008 and Irene in 2011 set off several major stromquakes. Fan said that shaking of ocean floor creates waves that seismologists normally don’t look for, owing to which these have gone unnoticed till now. Paul Earle, who is USGS seismologist, said that although ocean generated waves have shown up on the instruments of U.S. Geological Survey, however, in the mission of looking for survey these waves are generally considered as noise.