View Earthquakes Near Azle, Texas in a larger map
Map created by Andrew Weber for KUT News and StateImpact Texas. Orange circles represent earthquakes, wavy blue lines represent active wastewater disposal wells.
Another minor earthquake shook the North Texas community of Azle on Monday. It’s one of dozens to hit the region over the last few months that have residents on edge and complaining of property damage.
Many see a link between the quakes and increased oil and gas activity. But challenges confront scientists researching the quakes for the U.S. Geological Survey and Southern Methodist University. For one, they’ve needed to more accurately pinpoint the epicenters of the Azle quakes.
“The closest seismograph station used by the National Earthquake Information Center to locate the Azle earthquakes is over 60 miles to the south, the next closest is 125 miles to the West,” USGS Seismologist Williams Ellsworth explained in a letter to Azle Mayor Alan Brundrett in a December letter obtained by StateImpact Texas (embedded below).
In that same letter, Ellsworth explains how he has produced a more accurate map of the quakes, one that shows them clustered in a more concentrated location than previously thought.
“To date, it looks like the earthquakes are all in one very localized zone,” Ellsworth confirmed to StateImpact Texas over the phone.