Over the past couple of weeks I’ve heard a lot of rumours about a major earthquake being predicted for March 20th in Christchurch. However, upon further investigation I can’t seem to find a reliable source for these rumours. Some have attributed it to Ken Ring, but all I can find from Mr Ring is a vague suggestion that there might be an increased risk of earthquakes in New Zealand in the days around the 20th if March. That hardly qualifies as a prediction in my book.
I think it is time to put things into perspective. No one can predict earthquakes accurately, and those that claim they can usually announce their “prediction” AFTER the earthquake has happened. So rather than worry about these so called earthquake predictions, it’s time to relax a bit, have a little fun and raise some money for the Red Cross (Who have done a fantastic job in Canterbury).
So I’m running a competition to see who can make the best March 20 ‘prediction’ of their own.
A prize will be awarded in each of the following categories:
1) The most accurate “prediction” for the time of the strongest aftershock on March 20th (after all we are still getting multiple aftershocks each day in Canterbury).
2) The most creative description of your prediction (Nostradamus-like quatrain, tea leaves, tarot cards — use your imagination).
Rules and How to Enter
To make your prediction(s):
1) Make a $5 donation (per prediction) to the Red Cross at http://www.redcross.org.nz/donate (selecting 2011 earthquake appeal in the campaign box).
2) Once you receive the email response from the Red Cross confirming your donation, please forward the first seven lines of the email, along with your prediction to firstname.lastname@example.org.
3) For the accuracy competition – please state the time and magnitude of the aftershock you are “predicting”.
4) For the creative prediction provide a description of your prediction/predictive technique.
Judging of the prizes
Prizes will be a $NZ20 credit to the Fishpond (or Amazon if the winner is from overseas) account of your choice.
1) The winner of the accuracy prize will be the person whose prediction of the time of the strongest aftershock occurring within 10 km of Christchurch or Lyttelton between 12.01 am and 11.59 pm on March 20th 2010. In the case of two equally accurate guesses (oops I mean predictions) the winner will be judged based on the person with the closest magnitude prediction.
2) Predictions must be submitted to the following email address before 10 pm on March 19th 2011, New Zealand Time. I do NOT accept claims of retrospective predictions. We can leave those to the psychics.
3) The winner of the most creative prediction will be judged by myself with the help of a couple of colleagues.
4) Winning (and highly recommended) entries and results will be posted here on my sciblog website on the 22nd of March.