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2016 Earthquake Awareness Month Events

Wed., Feb. 3 – QuakeSmart® Business Preparedness Summit – Free earthquake damage prevention event in Cape Girardeau from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. Stop by the Missouri Geological Survey booth and visit with geologists to learn about the science behind earthquakes. Read more about the event. Register to attend.

Thurs., Feb. 11 – Missouri Seismic Safety Commission Meeting – Meeting to be held in St. Louis and at 10 a.m. in the St. Louis Science Center's T Rex Room. The public is invited to this quarterly meeting of the board that advises the Governor about the state’s earthquake readiness.

Mon., Feb. 15 – Earthquake Awareness Presentations – Presentations to be held in Piedmont at 11:30 a.m. at the AARP Building next to Clearwater High School. The public is invited to learn about the earthquake risk in Missouri and how to be prepared. A geologist with the Missouri Geological Survey and the earthquake program manager with the State Emergency Management Agency will give presentations.

Sat., Feb. 20 – Expectations, Impacts and costs of a Major Earthquake – Free presentations from 10 a.m. to Noon at Onondaga Cave State Park. Larry Pierce, a geologist with the Missouri Geological Survey will present information about the science behind earthquakes. He will be joined by the State Emergency Management Agency and interpretive staff from Missouri State Parks to learn about earthquake basics, earthquake history and earthquake preparedness. This program will include an introduction to the State Emergency Management Agency programs related to earthquakes. After the program, a video about why we have earthquakes in the central United States and why they seem to be more powerful and destructive than earthquakes on the western coastal areas of the United States. Refreshments will be provided and there will be plenty of time for questions and answers. Handouts also will be available to assist you in preparedness for you and your family. The park is located at 7556 Hwy H, in Leasburg. Call 573-245-6576 for more information.

Sat., Feb. 27 – See a free demonstration of any easy technique to strap your water heater to the wall, and get a free kit to take home, during this do-it-yourself seminar in Poplar Bluff. The Missouri State Emergency Management Agency is sponsoring the event, which begins at 10 a.m. at the Home Depot in Polar Bluff, 639 S. Westwood Blvd.

Also in 2016

The Earthquake Insight Field Trip through the New Madrid region will be held Friday afternoon through Sunday afternoon, April 1-3, 2016. The route includes geological evidence of the geologic and earthquake history of the region, as well as sites important to the human stories of the 1811-12 New Madrid earthquakes. The field-trip route is about 400 miles long, and will include two overnight stops. The route will begin in the St. Louis area and include Kaskaskia, Ill.; Ste. Genevieve and New Madrid, Mo.; Reelfoot Lake, Tenn.; as well as other sites in southern Illinois, southeast Missouri, and western Tennessee and Kentucky. Those who are interested in more details about the 2016 Earthquake Insight Field Trip should contact Phyllis Steckel at In the past, the annual Earthquake Insight Field Trips were subsidized by the US Geological Survey.  The purpose was to inform and educate those in the insurance, financial, utility, transportation, and government sectors about earthquake hazards and earthquake risks in the central U.S. However in 2016, professional geoscientists will volunteer their time and expertise to lead the event.

Anniversaries of Note

Dec. 16, 2015
Northeast Arkansas

Anniversary of 2:15 a.m. 1811 earthquake (estimated magnitude 7.7) in northeast Arkansas that started the sequence of Midwest earthquakes in 1811-12. The ground reportedly shook for several minutes in places and the earthquake was felt in cities such as New York and Washington, D.C.

Dec. 16, 2015
Northeast Arkansas

Anniversary of 7:15 a.m. 1811 earthquake (estimated magnitude 7.0) in northeast Arkansas that was felt on the East Coast. The event is described as "severe" at New Bourbon, Missouri, and was described by boatman John Bradbury, who was moored to a small island south of New Madrid, as "terrible, but not equal to the first." Hough believes that this large aftershock occurred around dawn in the New Madrid region near the surface projection of the Reelfoot fault.

Dec. 17, 2015
Southeast Nebraska

Anniversary of 2009 earthquake (magnitude 3.6) in southeast Nebraska was felt in portions of Missouri, including the cities of St. Joseph and Kansas City.

Jan. 5, 2016
Marked Tree, Arkansas

Anniversary of the 1843 earthquake (estimated magnitude 6.3) near Marked Tree, Arkansas which was felt over much of eastern half of Missouri. Some land reportedly sank near New Madrid and chimneys fell as far away as St. Louis.

Jan. 23, 2016
New Madrid, Missouri

Anniversary of 9:15 a.m. 1812 earthquake (estimated magnitude 7.5) near New Madrid, Missouri.

Feb. 7, 2016
New Madrid, Missouri

Anniversary of 3:45 a.m. 1812 earthquake (estimated 7.7 magnitude) which is considered to be the largest earthquake ever to occur in Missouri. This earthquake was felt across most of the United States and into Canada.

Feb. 21, 2016
East Prairie, Missouri

Anniversary of 2012 earthquake (magnitude 3.9) near East Prairie caused little damage but reportedly was felt in more than 20 states.

June 7, 2016
Festus, Missouri

Anniversary of 3:10 a.m. 2011 magnitude 3.9 earthquake near Sullivan, Missouri. This earthquake was felt in at least three states by nearly 3,500 people according to the US Geological Survey. There were no reports of casualties or fatalities from the earthquake. No damage was reported.

Earthquakes in Missouri

Educational Videos

Earthquake Exhibit at New Madrid Historical MuseumEarthquake Exhibit at the New Madrid Historical Museum

Check out this new video tour of the earthquake exhibit at the New Madrid Historical Museum.  The museum is located at No. 1 South Main Street, in New Madrid, Mo.

A Survivor's Story -- Eliza BryanA Survivor's Story, Eliza Bryan – The Great New Madrid Earthquakes of 1811-12

December 9 and 10, 2011 at the Dixie Theater in New Madrid, Missouri, Eliza told her story of surviving this terrible ordeal and life at that time in southeast Missouri. Eliza related her experiences to Dr. Seismo, played by David Stewart, Ph.D., through the help of Marian McDonald, who was reared in southeast Missouri more than 150 years after the great earthquakes. Eliza is one of the most important eyewitnesses to the events.

Join us Thursday, Oct. 13, 2016 for The Great Central U.S. ShakeOut

Join us for the Great Central U.S. ShakeOut

Thanks to everyone who participated in 2015. Plan to join us again, Thursday, Oct. 13, 2015 in the next ShakeOut exercise.  In the meantime, you and your family can practice how to protect yourselves during earthquakes by DROPPING to the ground, taking COVER by getting under a sturdy desk or table, and HOLDING ON! Practicing is a great way for your family or organization to be prepared to survive and recover quickly from big earthquakes. Learn more and register today!

Watch these award winning vidoes on our YouTube channelAward winning preparedness videos created by Missouri school children

Kindergarten through 12th grade students across Missouri were encouraged to share their knowledge by creating videos that educate others about preparing for an earthquake. The contest was sponsored by the department’s Missouri Geological Survey. Winners chosen from three categories: K-4, 5-8 and 9-12 grades.

Seventh grade students Miranda Kaleel and Lauren Whittier from Rockwood School District’s Selvidge Middle School in Ballwin, won the 5-8 grade category and were named grand prize winner for their silent movie video that demonstrates the steps one should take in the event of an earthquake. The video was a class project for gifted students.  Theresa Stockman is their teacher.  Kaleel and Whittier were invited to the Carnahan High School of the Future, St. Louis, to practice Drop, Cover, and Hold On during the Great Central U.S. ShakeOut on April 28, 2011.  Gov. Jay Nixon, U.S. Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano and U.S. Education Department Secretary Arne Duncan fielded questions Carnahan School for the Future and Selvidge Middle School students posed.  Kaleel and Whittier were recognized for their winning video by Secretaries Napolitano and Duncan.