Money for earthquake preparing still limited, officials say - WMC Action News 5 - Memphis, Tennessee

Money for earthquake preparing still limited, officials say

MEMPHIS, Tenn. (AP) - Money has long been tight for earthquake research and disaster planning in the New Madrid (MAD'-rid) fault area which includes West Tennessee.* Officials say long-term threats are hard to get the needed attention.

The Central United States Earthquake Consortium, a federally funded agency charged with helping coordinate earthquake preparedness, says its annual budget of 450-thousand dollars is barely enough to stay in business.

With a modest budget increase, the agency could put on training exercises for emergency response agencies throughout the region. The fault produces more than 200 small temblors a year. It was responsible in the early 1800s for some of the strongest earthquakes ever to hit the United States.

The fault created Reelfoot Lake.

(Copyright 2005 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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