GARY HINCKS / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY GARY HINCKS / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY
Earthquake distribution map. Major earthquake sites are shown as red dots. The grey lines are the boundaries between the Earth's tectonic plates, and the map shows the correlation between the two. Earthquakes occur due to plate movements. Friction prevents the plates moving past each other smoothly, and stresses build until they exceed the frictional force. This results in a rapid movement of the plates, which is felt as a shaking of the ground. The vast majority of earthquakes are too weak to cause damage, and many even pass without notice. Tectonic plates are slabs of hard rock that float and move on the more fluid layer beneath them.
Model release not required. Property release not required.