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EARTHQUAKE REFERENCE FILES Earthquake, shaking of the earth’s surface caused by
rapid movement of the earth’s rocky outer layer. Earthquakes occur when energy stored within
the earth, usually in the form of strain in rocks, suddenly releases. This energy is transmitted to
the surface of the earth by earthquake waves. The study of earthquakes and the waves they create
is called seismology. Scientists who study earthquakes are called seismologists. (Webster’s
p.423) The destruction an earthquake causes, depends on its magnitude or the amount of shaking
that occurs. The size varies from small imperceptible shaking, to large shocks felt miles around.
Earthquakes can tear up the ground, make buildings and other structures collapse, and create
tsunamis (large sea waves). Many Lives can be lost because of this destruction. (The Road to
Jaramillo p.211) Several hundred earthquakes, or seismic tremors, occur per day around the
world. A worldwide network of seismo...
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