Local January 27, 2012 | 7:45 am

Nature.com: Hispaniola shakes herald quakes

Santo Domingo.- Nature.com reports that the latest spate of quakes in Dominican Republic and the magnitude-7 quake that devastated Haiti in January 2010 may herald a prolonged period of heightened seismic activity, a study warns.

It said the Historical records of seismic activity, which analyzed Hispaniola, shared by Haiti and Dominican Republic, are arguably some of the most documented in the region.

“Its long history makes Hispaniola’s strongest spate of seismic activity, a seven-decade-long cluster of four major quakes in the eighteenth century, stand out between two lengthy quiet periods,” the news source said, citing William Bakun, a seismologist with the US Geological Survey in Menlo Park, California,

“Because the population then was so sparse, however, researchers have been unsure about the strength and location of those shocks,” so Bakun and his colleagues developed a mathematical technique to compare damage reports and other data gathered during the 2010 quake and its aftershocks with historical damage reports to improve those estimates.

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