As geologists scramble to discover the origins of Arkansas’ swarm of earthquakes centering around the small city of Guy, theories about the origins of the strange and sudden geological activity is reaching the Internet with just as much energy. The mysterious incident over the past week has already shook houses several times in the past few days. But is it a portent of another upcoming event? In the past three months the region has endured almost 600 such Earthquakes.
The Earthquakes are rumored to be manmade in origin, though the exact origin has not been determined just yet. Instead, many geologists are suggesting the events are indicative of activity in the New Madrid Fault line that could be indicative of “the big one” they have been warning about for years. Ten years ago geologists stated that fears over the New Madrid fault line were overstated. The idea that such a quake could destroy a large portion of the infrastructure in the region was according to many people found to be unwarranted. But if an Earthquake of these proportions were to hit the Midwest the potential problems that would arise would prove to be more than just an issue of wrecked homes and buildings. Instead, the destruction of such a large swathe of land would prove to instead be disastrous from coast to coast.
Even assuming the Earthquakes would be isolated to the midwest, agriculture grown here which normally sustains people all over would be devastated. The plants themselves would likely survive under these conditions, but the ability to move them across the United States would be affected severely. Much of the crops grown in the Midwest are traditionally shipped west and south to feed the cattle industry. With roads and bridges damaged, the trucks that normally haul these shipments would find it difficult to traverse the terrain and at certain points entirely impossible. While truckers would eventually find backroads to supplement their travel across highways, the first few weeks could result in massive shortages resulting in billions lost and potentially creating a food shortage crisis. While the roads would likely be rebuilt fairly quickly, the cost would also be tremendous. Additionally, other areas -such as those near nuclear facilities- may run into major problems requiring entire areas being cordoned off to traffic running through. With so many resources being appropriated toward minimizing the dangers from these threats, the roads could be halted. As a result there would be plenty of food in the areas affected by the Earthquakes, but far less outside of the area.
Of course it’s still unknown what this swarm of Earthquakes in Guy Arkansas means and if it is related to the fault line, but geologists are scrambling to find answers. And in the mean time this cascade of earthquakes has many from the area shaking in their boots.
In 1811 and 1812 the New Madrid Fault line became active and caused massive devastation the likes of which the US hadn’t seen before. Of course if the same were to happen today there would be far more disastrous effects than when the region was far less populated. And scientists suggest it’s not a matter of if it will happen again or not, but rather when.