London has two small fault lines running beneath it which could cause an earthquake.
The big smoke may be hit by a small earthquake (Photo: Getty)
A geologist from Imperial College London discovered two faults that are large enough to cause a small magnitude 5 earthquake.
This could happen once every thousand years, said Dr Richard Ghail, a specialist in civil and environmental engineering at Imperial College.
The risk of a quake is ‘enough to be scary but not fundamentally a problem’, he said, according to The Telegraph. The faults move between 1mm and 2mm a year. One was found beneath central London and another underneath Canary Wharf.
London is not often described as a place of high seismic activity (Photo: Getty)
However, the research showed that our previous view of London as an unshakable place of geological stability was incorrect. ‘It now looks a modestly active, very heavily faulted, complicated area,’ he added. ‘It’s probably gone from the simplest to most complex geology in the UK.’ London was hit by an earthquake was back in the 1770s.
To make sure we’re safe, new buildings in the city will be made so they can withstand a quake registering 6.5 on the Richter Scale. A category 5 earthquake ‘can cause damage of varying severity to poorly constructed buildings’ and ‘none to slight damage to all other building’.
But you’ll certainly feel it. Researchers say such a tremor would cause the same amount of shaking a tube platform experiences when two trains go past.