Once Bitten, Twice Shy

Rule #1:  Sequential events are not necessarily correlated, nor are they (necessarily) causally linked.

Rule #2:   Ya nevah know.

Despite considerable anecdotal ‘evidence,’ when it comes to predicting an earthquake by observing animal behavior the jury is still out –way out.  Fortunately for the world’s growing population of urbanites living in areas with a relatively low density of observable animals, there may be a mechanized alternative:

The National Park Service is investigating what caused the elevator at the Washington Monument to malfunction on Wednesday, May 14.  The elevator stopped about 20 feet above the ground floor at shortly after 6:30 p.m.  About 60 people were on the observation level 500 feet up and had to walk down nearly 900 steps.  By 7 p.m. the monument was open and the elevator running once again.

Well, there was a full moon on May 14th … But that’s not quite all:

Powhatan

The U.S. Geological Survey [reported that] a small earthquake shook central Virginia on Wednesday night [May 21]. The quake, with an estimated magnitude of 3.2, occurred at 9:47 p.m. and was centered 32 miles west of Richmond. There were no immediate reports of damage or injuries. In August 2011, a magnitude-5.8 earthquake centered near the central Virginia town of Mineral was felt from Georgia to Canada and caused cracks in the Washington monument that kept the 555-foot obelisk closed until just last week.

In the earthquake prediction industry a one-week lead time is considered pretty good advance warning.   So just who manufactures that elevator in the Washington Monument?   Is it Otis, Schindler or Thyssen-Krupp?

 

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