US States Most Likely to Get an Earthquake

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Which U.S. state has the most earthquakes?

With the 7.8-magnitude earthquake hitting Turkey this Monday, it’s common to wonder which US states are more prone to being struck. People who live in California may find this surprising, but Alaska is the most seismically active state.

Not only does Alaska win the grand prize when it comes to which US state has the most earthquakes, but it’s also where the largest strike occurred in our country—a magnitude 9.2 shock in 1964. In fact, quakes are a fact of life in this state, experts from the United States Geological Survey (USGS) say. But that’s not all; 11% of the world’s earthquakes and 17.5% of earthquakes in the US happen in Alaska.

An active fault known as the Alaskan-Aleutian Megathrust is the major cause of intense seismic activity in Alaska. According to experts, a saving grace for Alaskans is that there are 732,000 square miles of land for only 663,000 people, which means less built property in harm’s way.

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