June 10, 2010 in Region

Mount Rainier shaking with tiny ice quakes

Associated Press

SEATTLE — Swarms of tiny earthquakes from the top of Mount Rainier are causing seismometers to squiggle at the University of Washington in Seattle.

Scientists call them “ice quakes.” Professor Steve Malone told KING-TV they believe it’s glacial noise coming from the bottom of glaciers.

The tremors jiggling the Pacific Northwest Seismic Network have a magnitude of less than 1.

Scientists don’t believe they have anything to do with volcanic activity or Saturday’s avalanche that killed one climber on Mount Rainier. But they haven’t seen such “ice quakes” on the mountain since 1998.

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