Guest post written by Jens Skapski, last year's student geophysics, Ruhr-University Bochum, Germany
Jens is also the main person and creator behind the Earthquake Impact Database, the world's most detailed logbook of damaging earthquakes and Juskis Erdbebennews.de, a daily earthquake blog in German.
Deep earthquakes are followed by larger shallow earthquakes in their vicinity: The theory that builds the Dutchsinse kingdom. The basis of all his earthquake forecasts.
In general we have to say: Yes, around 90 percent of mantle quakes are followed by shallow quakes with a higher magnitude within 1000 km radius and 10 days. But not because the deep quake transfers “pressure” to the crust (which travels along arrows on a map - chosen plate boundaries). Most of the deep quakes, a point that Dutchsinse got right, are happening around Fiji, Tonga, the Japanese Izu Islands and south of the Philippines. All of these areas not only show deep seismicity within a sunken slab of oceanic crust, but also very significant shallow seismicity. All areas, especially Fiji, often have many deep earthquakes. Some once or twice a month, Fiji and Tonga once or twice per day. All areas also have frequent shallow seismic activity, an M5 once a week on average.
So, on the face of it, most deep M4 quakes in these areas are followed by M5s, due to the latter’s high occurrence rate, without being related to the former.
Even deep M5 quakes are so frequent that you might say most of the shallower M6 quakes in those areas are preceded by these quakes within 10 days. Statistics fulfil Dutchsinse’s theory here.
But what happens if a large earthquake strikes deep down there?
Luckily, Dutchsinse’s deep M6+ quakes, which should be followed by shallow M7 quakes, are not very common. Otherwise people may see how bound to statistics this theory is. Let’s have a look in the past.
Considering the last 5 years of earthquake activity - EMSC data from January 1st 2013 to August 18th 2018 - the following deep (>300 km) M6+ Fiji quakes have occurred. In each line below the deep quake is the strongest shallow (
Red: shallow quakes with lower or equal magnitude,
orange: shallow quakes which are less than one magnitude stronger than the deep one
green: successful predictions according to the theory (the following quake is at least one magnitude stronger).
August 19th, 2017, M6.4 - below M5.5
June 17th, 2017, M6.1 - June 25th, M6.1 Fiji
April 18th, 2017, M6.0 - April 27th, M5.5 Tonga
February 24th, 2017, M6.9 - March 3rd, M6.0 Solomon Islands
January 2nd, 2017, M6.3 - January 3rd, M7.0, South of Fiji
October 18th, 2016, M6.0 - October 26th, M6.0 Tonga
September 24th, 2016, M6.7 - September 29th, M5.7 Kermadec-Islands
May 28th, 2016, M6.9 - June 10th, M6.1, Solomon Islands
June 21st, 2015, M6.0 - June 25th, M6.0, South of Kermadec-Islands
April 28th, 2015, M6.2 - May 6th, M5.6, Kermadec-Islands
January 28th, 2015, M6.2 - January 30th, M6.0 Vanuatu
December 30th, 2014, M6.1 - below M5.5
November 1st, 2014, M7.1 - November 10th, M5.6 Kermadec-Islands
July 21st, 2014, M6.9 - July 29th, M5.5, South of Fiji
May 4th, 2014, M6.6 and 6.3 - May 16th, M5.5, South of Vanuatu and May 18th, M5.5, Samoa
March 26th, 2014, M6.3 - April 4th, M6.0, Solomon Islands
November 23rd, 2013, M6.5 - November 29th, M5.5, South of Fiji
All times given in UTC
Summary: 18 deep M6+ quakes near Fiji since 2013. Only one of them was followed by a stronger (+0.7M) shallow quake within 14 days and 2000 km.
How can one claim, based on these statistics, that deep Fiji earthquakes cause one magnitude stronger, shallow earthquakes “nearby”?
And for anyone who likes to do probability calculus (and for those who believe a M5.5 quake would be sufficient to confirm this theory): 280 M5.5+ earthquakes have occurred within 2000 kilometers around the Fiji Islands from January 2013 until August 18th, 2018. Or in other words: 280 quakes within 2058 days - that is an average recurrence time of 8 days!
Luckily for Dutchy, these deep M6+ quakes are not so common. Thus, his fanboys don’t get an obvious hint that the deep quake theory may not be as … reliable…Sadly for Dutchsinse, now and then deep Fiji quakes become very large and very noteworthy. This happened on August 19th, the quake that destroyed the Dutchsinse kingdom: Magnitude 8.2, South of the Fiji Islands. 570 km deep. Deep. Massive. Interesting from a scientific perspective, but not really damaging though or dangerous.
I can imagine the stunning moment in Dutchy’s mind, who probably knows about the vulnerability of his deep quake theory. This inner discussion could have been something like this: “Okay, if I want to continue this game, I have to forecast a Magnitude 9 quake now. Otherwise people could ask why I suddenly doubt my theory. But such a quake is highly unlikely and my followers will notice if I fail with such a forecast…”
And what did he do? In the Youtube-Video published on August 20th (UTC), he warned for a possible M9.3 earthquake in Vanuatu / New Caledonia. And to continue with his pressure transfer, standing-wave theories, 13 other large quakes between M6 and M8 were said to strike within 10 days, until the end of August.
The following table shows all forecasts issued in this video:
M9.3 Vanuatu. M8.0 Solomon Islands. M7.5 Southern Japan, M6.8 Philippines, M6.5 Java, M7.0 Sumbawa, M6.5 Ecuador, M6.7 Vancouver Island, M6.7 New Zealand. He knew that the occurrence of all these quakes was extremely unlikely. He went all-in and predicted a week full of chaos and destruction. He knew, if at least one or two of these big quakes would occur and end up causing a disaster, he would be the hero that is celebrated for saving people’s lives (maybe the reason for the huge amount of forecasts - higher chance for at least one hit?) and his fanatic fanboys would ignore the dozens of failed forecasts. He (maybe) knew, if he fails it all, I would come around and publish a text like this
Further, the new “deep quake activity” during the week in Peru (said to be the strongest deep quake in South America since the beginning of his records - it wasn’t, as the 2015 quakes had Mw 7.6 and past quakes were even stronger) has lead him to “specify” his warning for Peru by extending it into Chile and Colombia (for quakes around M8) in his Friday night video. So by the end of the week we had warnings in place for almost every region around the Pacific. However, the “warning” for South America is still lasting, so we should not plan the coronation ceremony before the old king has died.
Okay, we have to admit, he has chosen a more “secure” way by saying that he has no experience with such massive deep quakes and he is not sure if it will really cause a Magnitude 9 earthquake. But is it a way to go safe by issuing a warning for almost everywhere? You can’t set the whole world on alert. It would guarantee you at least a few hits though… wait, is this the reason why…?
However, a trustworthy person would have compared the situation with earlier similar ones before he starts his fear-mongering. There were three deep quakes of similar size in earlier times: 2013 (Russia), 1994 (Bolivia) and 1970 (Colombia). And guess how many shallow earthquakes they “did cause” (worldwide M6 quakes within 10 days of each)?
May 24th, 2013, M8.3 Russia:
May 24th, M6.0 Tonga
May 24th, M6.7 Russia (aftershock)
June 2nd, M6.3 Taiwan
June 9th, 1994, M8.2 Bolivia:
June 9th, M6.1 Bolivia (aftershock)
June 9th, M6.2 Philippines
June 13th, M6.2 Papua New Guinea
June 15th, M6.2 and 6.1 Java
June 18th, M6.8 New Zealand
June 19th, M6.0 New Zealand (aftershock)
July 31st, 1970, M8.0 Colombia
August 7th, M6.1 Fiji
August 8th, M6.0 Indonesia
So: No significant quake activity followed, in the past, after huge deep earthquakes. There was no reason to assume that this time would be any different!
And in reality:
No M9 Vanuatu. No M8 Solomon Islands. No M7.5 Southern Japan. But a lot of strong quakes across the globe. One of the most active phases within years. 14 M6+ quakes within 10 days, more than three times the long-term average. But was this what Dutchsinse expected? These are the results of his forecasts (note the tolerance of 0.3 magnitudes and 200 miles):
One hit and three quakes within neighbour regions (a bit more than 200 miles from the expected epicenter away). A success rate of less than 8%, which is even lower than the appalling results from the past weeks. And if this wasn’t embarrassing enough, as the most seismically active week of the year has passed, dozens of forecasts were issued by him and luck wasn’t so kind to grant him their successes.
But instead of admitting he was wrong, what is he doing: telling a lot of false claims. Here are some examples from his videos of the past week:
1. The “M5” that has happened in Colorado during the week fulfills his forecast for the central US (although it was more than 600 miles from the next forecast area). The magnitude given by the USGS, 4.1, is censored or downgraded or whatever, so he believes the quake was actually much stronger. Otherwise his forecast would have been a miss.
2. A hoax quake near the Bretagne coast (M3.1), detected by a French network which is known for hoax quakes (just check their list and see), also appears at EMSC. The better network from the University Straßbourg (see screenshot) didn’t register this event, nor can it be confirmed by seismic monitoring from Belgium. So this hoax “earthquake” fulfills Hoaxsinse’s hoaxcast… ehhh forecast for Southern England.
3. A 6.0 quake in Western Iran, which was not mentioned in any of his forecast videos, happened on Sunday night. Dutchsinse claimed that he forecasted this quake a few hours earlier in his live chat. However, I haven’t found any evidence for this “forecast”. Maybe I'm wrong, maybe I just haven’t seen it. Would be better if Dutchsinse shows a screenshot of his off-broadcasting forecasts to prove it.
4. The relatively large eruption of the volcano Manam in Papua New Guinea (initially Dutchsinse located this volcano in the Philippines, shit happens) apparently fulfills his PNG-forecast, as seismic energy can also be released by eruptions.
5. An initially detected M3.6 at Oraefajökull volcano, Iceland, is said to fulfill the M5.1 forecast. However, this quake was a hoax (ghost quakes), detected by IMO, and subsequently deleted by them after a few minutes but still visible on the EMSC feed. This hoax was triggered by a real quake, which was only M0.1.
Now here we stand with his blood on our hands. We tried so hard, will his fans understand?
It is (almost) September and we are looking back on a week full of… quakes, yes. In contrast to the weeks after the last massive, super deep quakes, there has been a lot of activity around the world. However, this was the activity as it was expected by Dutchy. As was the case in the previous weeks, the accuracy of the Dutchsinse forecast is low; even lower this time, below 8%, limited to the quakes with a relatively high occurrence rate, semi-hits and a quake (stronger than expected) in Venezuela due to coincidence and his amount of warnings for almost every region around the globe.
Conclusion 1: If you are a Dutchsinse follower and suddenly start to reconsider the stuff Failking/Fakeking Dutchy MMMCVII. has taught you in the past years, congratulations, you may be on a the better path!
Conclusion 2: If you are Dutchsinse: Congratulations, you are the only “victim” of the deep M8.2 Fiji earthquake.