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Sunday, 12 January 2014

Cyroseisms/Frost Quakes


     Not long after the ice storm the many residents of the Toronto area witnessed cyroseisms, also known as frost quakes. Frost quakes are vibrations caused when water underground expands as it is suddenly frozen with very cold temperatures. They are often identified by the "booming" noises that accompany it.
     However, much of the noises produced at that time are actually unrelated to the frost quake itself, but are the sound of ice cracking on the roof, corresponding with the time of the frost quakes because of the very cold temperatures.
     During the frost quakes in the middle of the night many people were kept up by the booming noises, and some were concerned, but frost quakes are considered harmless. Still, in the following days at our house we noticed that one of the light switches and doors had some resistance to being moved, so we are wondering if maybe slight shifts in the ground caused this.
     A woman living in Toronto, Ashley King, decided to create a customized google map tracking reported frost quakes in Toronto and open it up to the public so that people experiencing them know that they're not alone. Here is a link to her map: https://mapsengine.google.com/map/edit?mid=zId7WwTT0PPk.kmYXHjIndA-w.
     Do you have any frost quake stories? Feel free to share them in the comments section below or search #frostquake on twitter.

References
Turgeon, Carolyn. January 7, 2014. Mapping the 'frost quakes': Toronto woman tracking cyroseisms so 'people don't think they're crazy'. Posted Toronto http://news.nationalpost.com/2014/01/07/tracking-the-frost-quakes-toronto-woman-aims-to-create-public-record-of-cold-weather-booms/

Prociv, Kathryn. January 7, 2014. A 'COOL" Weather Phenomenon That Only Happens When it's COLD!. Retrieved January 12, 2014 from http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/capital-weather-gang/wp/2014/01/07/a-cool-weather-phenomenon-that-only-happens-when-its-cold/

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