NEWS

Seahawks fans 'earthquake' to be measured by seismologists

01/09/2015 02:30 EST | Updated 03/11/2015 05:59 EDT
The well-known roar of Seattle football fans will be used by scientists to experiment with an earthquake early warning system at tomorrow's Seahawks playoff game against the Carolina Panthers at CenturyLink Field. 

A new tool called QuickShake has been installed in three stadium locations.

Seismologists from the University of Washington and the Pacific Northwest Seismic Network will measure how the earth moves when the fans cheer, stomp and clap. 

It's hoped QuickShake will provide a faster connection between the sensors and the network.

If so, it will show vibrations within three seconds – up to 10 times faster than other quake measuring instruments.

Experts say it would potentially give the public a few extra seconds to scramble for cover in the early stages of a large earthquake.

Scientists were first drawn to the impact of crowd reactions during a game in 2011 when cheering, stomping and clapping after a successful Seattle run created a seismic tremor that was recorded by a monitoring station near the stadium.

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