What caused the meckering earthquake?
- grpr1964Lv 41 decade agoFavorite Answer
Meckering (Western Australia) is geologically located in an area of very ancient and stable crystalline Pre-Cambrian basement rock. This is not anywhere near a tectonic plate boundary, either constructive or destructive, and is therefore not an area where large earthquakes would be expected. However, in this case, the cause of the earthquake was related to relatively shallow movements on faults, which were expressed on the ground surface as displacements and fault scarps. I'd need to know a lot more about the local geology before giving a better explanation - sorry!
That said, earthquakes can and do occur in some unlikely places, although they are a lot less common, and usually less destructive than those associated with tectonic plate boundaries. I believe there's a fault scarp in Finland that must have made a huge earthquake in pre-historic times (Finland has similar ancient Pre-Cambrian rocks to Western Australia; but in this case, the fault may have been linked to crustal re-adjustment after the ice melt at the end of the last ice age). In the USA, there were significant earthquakes in Mississippi, in 1811, 1812 and 1931. These caused a lot of damage to property. Again, the location was no-where near a plate boundary. In the UK, small but significant earthquakes are associated with re-adjustment on deep-seated old fault lines.