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Earthquake Fault Thought Dormant Could Cause a Major Shaker Under LA

An earthquake fault, thought to be dormant, is active and could cause a destructive temblor along the Los Angeles coast, scientists say.

The Wilmington Blind-Thrust fault, runs about 12.5 miles from Huntington Beach, directly beneath the Los Angeles and Long Beach harbors and out to Santa Monica Bay.

Citing new research, scientists believe the fault could cause a 6.4 magnitude earthquake if it ruptured.

“It doesn’t rupture frequently, but it’s like a sleeping giant beneath the harbor,” lead scientist Franklin Wolfe told the LA Times. “Just because it’s slow, doesn’t mean it’s not dangerous.”

Wolfe saysthat the fault is very slow-moving and could rupture in the next 3,000 to 5,000 years.

“It makes you wonder how many other faults are in California that are not detected and slow-moving,” Wolfe told the LA Times. “The San Andreas fault is the most noteworthy, but many other of faults in California capable of generating damage.”