ALL NEWS

Volcanic activity the likely cause of central Utah earthquakes

Mar 2, 2021, 4:57 PM

central Utah earthquakes black rock desert lava flow...

Aerial view of the lava flow left by volcano in Millard County, UT (Photo: University of Utah)

(Photo: University of Utah)

Two recent central Utah earthquakes have ties to volcanic eruption thousands of years ago. The volcano created a lava flow now called the Black Rock Desert between 9,000 and 12,000 years ago.

The earthquakes near Fillmore in 2018 and 2019 measured 4.0 and 4.1 on the Richter scale. At that time, the University of Utah had a temporary network of seismographs in place nearby to monitor geothermal resources. That network allowed detailed observation of the two quakes, and researchers have determined the earthquakes and volcano are connected. 

That is the finding of postdoctoral researcher Maria Mesimeri, who has been studying the area and recently published her findings in the journal Geophysical Research Letters. She theorizes that underground movement of magma, or possibly hot water, could be responsible for the 2018 and 2019 quakes.

And she says the central Utah earthquakes are an indication that volcanic activity is still occurring in the area.

Professor Kristine Pankow, associate director of the University of Utah Seismograph Stations, says there’s no indication any eruption is imminent, but the area certainly deserves more study.

“Maybe there’s other, smaller events that might occur, not that I’m worried, but more so we can get a better sense of this system and what’s happening out there,” Professor Pankow told KSL Newsradio.

The black lava rocks left by the volcano are readily visible from I-15 in Millard County.

RELATED:

Yellowstone opens with a number of earthquakes (don’t worry though, it’s normal)

5.7 magnitude earthquake reported near Magna, shaking felt all over northern Utah

Idaho, Utah earthquakes have same cause, but not related

 

We want to hear from you.

Have a story idea or tip? Send it to the KSL NewsRadio team here.

All News

The best thing people can do to stay safe around bison is to give them space....

Kennedy Camarena

Caution: Bison ahead

Most people have to travel to Yellowstone to see Bison. Utahns, however, have Antelope Island State Park, where they can find bison.

31 minutes ago

people celebrate the opening of the new facility in millcreek...

Eric Cabrera

New facility in Millcreek gives young adults a new beginning

Salt Lake County Youth Services opened a new facility. The new facility in Millcreek is the largest they have to date, with an additional 18 beds.

14 hours ago

View of Salt Lake City pictured, governor is cracking down on denver sending immigrants to utah...

Aimee Cobabe

Utah governor’s office pushing back against Denver for bussing immigrants to Utah

Gov. Spencer Cox's office says that the City of Denver did not consult with them about sending immigrants to Utah.

15 hours ago

High-tension power lines run along Mountain View Corridor on the west side of the Salt Lake Valley ...

Emma Keddington

Rocky Mountain Power confirms a “perfect storm” of power outages across the state

SALT LAKE CITY — Rocky Mountain Power has confirmed just over 19,000 power outages affecting customers across the state, but they are reportedly unrelated to each other.  Jona Whitesides with the company said it’s a “perfect storm situation.”  The affected areas, as of 6:35 p.m., are:  North Ogden, affecting 1,342 customers Tooele County, affecting 1,853 […]

16 hours ago

Officers stopped the teens in possession of the stolen car  in Kearns. The driver of the stolen car...

Esme Sanchez Estevez

BREAKING: Pursuit of 3 teens who stole a car in Kearns

Officers stopped the teens in possession of the stolen car in Kearns. The driver of the stolen car is still on the run.

16 hours ago

two participants at the National Veterans Golden Age Games are shown saluting...

Michael Martinez

Around 2,000 volunteers needed for National Veterans Golden Age Games

Up to 2,000 volunteers are needed for the National Veterans Golden Age Games. This is the first time the games have been held in Utah.

17 hours ago

Sponsored Articles

Underwater shot of the fisherman holding the fish...

Bear Lake Convention and Visitors Bureau

Your Bear Lake fishing guide

Bear Lake offers year-round fishing opportunities. By preparing ahead of time, you might go home with a big catch!

A group of people cut a purple ribbon...

Comcast

Comcast announces major fiber network expansion in Utah

Comcast's commitment to delivering extensive coverage signifies a monumental leap toward a digitally empowered future for Utahns.

a doctor putting her hand on the chest of her patient...

Intermountain Health

Intermountain nurse-midwives launch new gynecology access clinic

An access clinic launched by Intermountain nurse-midwives provides women with comprehensive gynecology care.

Young couple hugging while a realtor in a suit hands them keys in a new home...

Utah Association of Realtors

Buying a home this spring? Avoid these 5 costly pitfalls

By avoiding these pitfalls when buying a home this spring, you can ensure your investment will be long-lasting and secure.

a person dressed up as a nordic viking in a dragon boat resembling the bear lake monster...

Bear Lake Convention and Visitors Bureau

The Legend of the Bear Lake Monster

The Bear Lake monster has captivated people in the region for centuries, with tales that range from the believable to the bizarre.

...

Live Nation Concerts

All the artists coming to Utah First Credit Union Amphitheatre (formerly USANA Amp) this summer

Summer concerts are more than just entertainment; they’re a celebration of life, love, and connection.

Volcanic activity the likely cause of central Utah earthquakes