The Hollywood Fault has gotten a lot of attention lately from opponents of developments in its vicinity, but we can’t forget that Hollywood’s not the only fault in town. Researchers at UC Santa Barbara have just discovered something super fascinating about one lower-profile (but very important) fault: the Newport-Inglewood Fault, which runs along the Westside through the LA basin and was responsible for the 6.4 Long Beach earthquake in 1933. The new findings suggest the fault might be way deeper than previously thought and that it may be the ancient collision site of the Pacific and North American tectonic plates, says the UC Santa Barbara Current, the university’s official news site.
The revelation comes from UCSB geologist Jim Boles, who took samples from 24 oil wells along a 30-mile section of the fault (it runs from Costa Mesa to Culver City, traveling through Inglewood, Gardena, Compton, Signal Hill, Long Beach, Seal Beach, and Huntington Beach, and is marked by a string of low hills). Over a third of the samples indicated high levels of “primordial” helium-3, a remnant of the Big Bang whose only source on Earth is in the mantle, which lies under the Earth’s crust. FULL REPORT