New York isn’t often thought of as being particularly earthquake-prone, and it’s true the state is less seismically active than Western regions with more plate boundaries, but, nontheless, large and occasionally damaging earthquakes do occur in the Empire State. In fact, according to Earthquake Track, as of this writing there have been two earthquakes in the past month and four in the past year.
Earthquakes are the result of a sudden release of energy in the Earth’s crust, creating seismic wave. They can occur anywhere there is sufficient elastic strain stored to drive fracture propagation along a fault line. Typically, the sides of these faults move past each other smoothly, but if there are any irregularities or asperities along a fault surface that increases frictional resistance, the stress can rise enough to break through the asperity, suddenly allowing sliding over the locked part of the fault and subsequently releasing stored energy in the form of tremors and seismic waves.
The strength of the quake is recorded on the Richter scale, with magnitude 3 and lower Richter scale readings being almost imperceptible while magnitude 7 or higher can potentially cause great damage, especially in densely populated areas. Luckily, Kenneth Bieber offers earthquake insurance in addition to our trusted condo insurance. If you live in an earthquake prone area, don’t leave the value of your home up to chance; consider earthquake insurance before it’s too late.