‘This was not small’: Queen’s University professor pinpoints frost quake – Kingston

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“For a frost quake this was not small”, says Dr. Alex Braun, a professor with the Department of Geological Sciences and Geological Engineering at Queen’s University in Kingston, Ontario.

A loud explosion and rumbling was heard at 2:36 p.m. on Monday, January 7.

“Right now, after we have looked at a lot of data sets, we are thinking it was a frost quake,” Braun added.

For Jason Potter from Perth Road, Ont., the noise was so loud, and the rumble that shook his house so pronounced, that he thought his neighbour, who owns a sea plane, had crashed.

“It sounded to me like an explosion,” Potter said. “I did drive down to the lake, to see if there was anything there, but nothing.”


READ MORE:
Experts still looking into what caused Monday’s seismic events in Alberta

On social media, at least 34 people in the South Frontenac Township area and in communities just north of Kingston reported the phenomena. Residents in Battersea, Chaffey’s Lock, Sydenham and Sunbury felt and heard something they couldn’t explain.

“I walked to the road because to me the bang had come from that direction,” said Potter.

“I figured it was the local quarry doing some blasting in the off season, and found … it wasn’t them,” said Battersea resident Casey Carlyle. “It was a good bang.”

A piece of sophisticated equipment at Queen’s University, a superconducting gravimeter, is one of only 30 in the world that can detect frost quakes.

“It costs about a half million dollars,” says Dr. Braun. “It is the most sensitive gravimeter on earth.”


READ MORE:
Mystery behind noise in northwest Calgary revealed

According to Dr. Braun, the frost quake was caused by recent sub-zero temperatures that warmed up to above zero in less than 24 hours. As a result, the great difference in temperature reacted with a mix of water and ice below the ground. The epicentre of the frost quake the reaction triggered occurred in the Perth Road area.

“So people around that area, about a five- to 10-kilometre radius, they would have heard what was happening,” Dr. Braun said. “And the instruments here at Queen’s University, farther away, they felt the seismic waves which traveled through the ground.”

For those who experienced it, a mystery has been solved.

© 2019 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.

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New Indonesia quake kills 3 in Java village, shakes Bali

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PALU, Indonesia – An earthquake collapsed homes on Indonesia’s Java island, killing at least three people, and shook the tourist hotspot of Bali on Thursday, two weeks after a major quake-tsunami disaster in a central region of the archipelago.

Indonesia’s disaster agency said the nighttime quake was centred at sea, 55 kilometres northeast of Situbondo city, and also felt in Lombok. The U.S. Geological Survey said it had a 6.0 magnitude.

At least three people were killed as a shallow 6.0-magnitude earthquake struck off the coast of Indonesia's Java and Bali islands, a government official said.
At least three people were killed as a shallow 6.0-magnitude earthquake struck off the coast of Indonesia’s Java and Bali islands, a government official said.  (HANDOUT / AFP/GETTY IMAGES)

The agency said the worst affected area was in Sumenep district, East Java where three people died in one village and several homes were damaged.

It said « the earthquake was felt quite strongly by people in Sumenep and Situbondo for 2-5 seconds. People poured out of their houses. In other areas the earthquake was felt to be moderate. »

The International Monetary Fund and the World Bank are holding annual meetings on Bali through Sunday.

Some tourists and residents on Bali went outdoors as a precaution but then back to sleep when there was no tsunami warning.

The country is still working to recover from the earthquake and tsunami that killed more than 2,000 people and left perhaps thousands more buried deeply in mud in some neighbourhoods of Palu city in central Sulawesi.

Read more:

Indonesia limits foreign role in earthquake relief

Disaster agency spokesman Sutopo Purwo Nugroho said Wednesday the death toll from the double disaster on Sept. 28 has risen to 2,045, with most of the fatalities in the coastal city of Palu. More than 80,000 people are living in temporary shelters or otherwise displaced, he said.

Possibly 5,000 people were buried in places where the earthquake caused liquefaction, a phenomenon where wet soil weakens and collapses, becoming mud that sucks houses and everything else into the ground in a quicksand-like effect. Stretches of the coastline were trashed by the tsunami that Nugroho said had waves up to 11 metres high.

The official search for bodies will end Thursday with mass prayers in hard-hit neighbourhoods, but Nugroho said volunteers and family members can continue searching. Memorials will be constructed in hard-hit neighbourhoods such as Balaroa and Petobo, he said at a news conference in Jakarta.

« People are traumatized. They don’t want to go back » to those places, Nugroho said. « They asked to be relocated to another place and a house made for them. »

After making a rare appeal for international assistance, Indonesia is now trying to limit foreign involvement in the disaster relief effort. Nugroho said there’s no need for international aid other than the four priorities identified by Indonesia — tents, water treatment units, generators and transport.

The disaster agency has circulated guidelines that say foreign aid workers can be in the field only with Indonesian partners. Groups that sent foreign personnel to the disaster zone are « advised to retrieve their personnel immediately, » according to those guidelines.

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