Source: The Herald Sun, Monday, January 22, 1996, p.16


South Gippsland is quake country

By WENDY BUSFIELD 
 
SOUTH Gippsland is 
one of Australia's 
earthquake hotspots, 
according to the 
RMIT's Seismology 
Research Centre. 
 
   But the centre's 
principal seismologist 
Vaughan Wesson 
yesterday said 
earthquakes were also 
likely near Geelong and 
Echuca. 
 
   He said the Morning- 
ton Peninsula-where a 
small quake rocked Mt 
Martha last week, 
measuring 2.6 on the 
Richter scale-was 
another unstable zone. 
 
   Most earthquakes were 
too small and deep to be 
felt, Mr Wesson said. 
 
   But he could not rule 
out an earthquake in 
Victoria similar to the 
one that killed 13 people 
in Newcastle in 1989. 
 
   "We're not a plate 
boundary like New Zea- 
land, Japan and 
California, but we are 
certainly one of the more 
active intra-plate areas," 
he said. 
 
   Earthquakes hit 
Victoria at least once a 
day, but sizeable tremors 
were only felt once a 
month. 
 
   Mr Wesson said South 
Gippsland had been a hot 
spot for 30 years and 
would continue flaring 
for another three decades. 
 
   He said land from 
Melbourne through the 
eastern highlands to Mt 
Kosciusko was 
particularly prone to 
movement. 
 
   Other quake-prone 
areas include Pyramid 
HiU in northern Victoria 
the Otways forest south 
of Colac and the Bradford 
Hills southwest of 
Bendigo. 
 
   "Mountainous areas of 
the state tend to have 
more earthquakes," Mr 
Wesson said.


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