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Dustin Wilcox's Fundraiser:

The Next California Earthquake

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BENEFITING:

Dustin Wilcox

THE STORY:

As an independent filmmaker with a degree in Broadcast Journalism, as well as an amateur seismologist, I set out to create a documentary about the southern section of the San Andreas fault, which has not ruptured since 1680 despite a past recurrence rate of about 180 years.

The Southern segment, which stretches from Parkfield in Monterey County all the way down to the Salton Sea, is capable of a Richter scale 8.1 magnitude earthquake. At its closest, this fault passes about 35 miles to the northeast of Los Angeles. Such a large earthquake on this Southern segment would kill thousands of people in Los Angeles, San Bernandino, Riverside, and surrounding areas, and cause hundreds of billions of dollars in damage.

Such a scenario, statistically inevitable in the current century, is reason enough for a documentary on this topic to completely explore the risks and consequences of the movement along this overdue fault.

Residents of California, particularly around highly-populated L.A. county where many were affected by the 1994 Northridge quake, have become complacent with the recent period of quiet, not realizing that massive earthquakes in Southern California have, in the past, come in bursts. Seismic activity in and around the Salton Sea has been noticable in the past months, beginning in the summer of 2012. Scientists now believe that the Salton Sea will be the point of rupture when the San Andreas moves.

This campaign promises absolute transparency with respect to the use of funds it aims to collect. The goal is expected to to cover the base costs of the production of the film. Costs will include purchase and use of a Sony HXR-NX30 NXCAM HD Camcorder, as well as necessary accessories such as microphones and lighting devices. Funds will also be used for the cost of transportation in the form of an economy to mid size car rental during the filming. Information regarding the film's progress will be posted here and through other venues such as Twitter.

This documentary can be made with a higher or lower budget, but to demonstrate the level of professionalism that a project like this needs to be successful, and for its potential educational value, the current goal has been set at $4000.

This is not going to be another History Channel type disaster feature, but rather an honest look into why this area of California has not ruptured for so long, and what such an earthquake will eventually do to this part of the West Coast of the United States.

While there are hundreds of published articles about the San Andreas fault, scientists are just beginning to learn breakthrough lessons in earthquake behaviour and the dangers of miscalcuating potential risks. The central section of the San Andreas fault is also considered overdue, and some studies have even explored the possibility of a rupture on both segments of the fault simulateously.

Contributions are greatly appreciated and needed, but if you are unable to donate, there is more you can do. Help me get the word out if you are interested in seeing this documentary or being part of its production. If you live in California, share this with your neighbour or your co-worker. If you live in the Coachella or Imperial Valleys, help me use the area to improve scientific research on seismology.

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