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Fact Sheet 2014–3083

ShakeAlert—An Earthquake Early Warning System for the United States West Coast

By Erin R. Burkett, Douglas D. Given, and Lucile M. Jones

Thumbnail of and link to report PDF (11.3 MB)Abstract

Earthquake early warning systems use earthquake science and the technology of monitoring systems to alert devices and people when shaking waves generated by an earthquake are expected to arrive at their location. The seconds to minutes of advance warning can allow people and systems to take actions to protect life and property from destructive shaking. The U.S. Geological Survey (USGS), in collaboration with several partners, has been working to develop an early warning system for the United States. ShakeAlert, a system currently under development, is designed to cover the West Coast States of California, Oregon, and Washington.

First posted August 29, 2014

Revised June 23, 2016

For additional information, contact:
Earthquake Science Center—Menlo Park, Calif. Office
U.S. Geological Survey
345 Middlefield Road, MS 977
Menlo Park, CA 94025

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Suggested citation:

Burkett, E.R., Given, D.G., and Jones, L.M., 2014, ShakeAlert—An earthquake early warning system for the United States West Coast (ver. 1.1, June 2016): U.S. Geological Survey Fact Sheet 2014–3083, 4 p.,

ISSN 2327-6916 (print)

ISSN 2327-6932 (online)

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