Quake Expert Warns Funding Cuts Will Stop Development Of Early Warning System

LOS ANGELES (CBSLA.com/AP) — President Donald Trump’s budget proposal would cut funding for an earthquake early warning system for California, Oregon and Washington state.

The $8.2 million system being developed in conjunction with various universities is intended at providing critical seconds of warning when an earthquake has started and potentially dangerous shaking is imminent.

A version of the ShakeAlert system has been undergoing testing but still needs more seismic sensors installed in Northern California, Oregon and Washington.

California Rep. Adam Schiff tells the Los Angeles Times it’s unacceptable to stop the program just as its system is being built out.

In a statement to CBSLA, Dr. Lucy Jones, quake expert and former advisor to Mayor Eric Garcetti, said she was “deeply disappointed” by the move and that the loss of federal funding would stop the program.

“Congress has the responsibility to fund the government, and most of the California delegation have supported the program,” said Jones. “My hope is that they will continue to do so.”

The proposed funding cuts for the next fiscal year starting Oct. 1 would be from the U.S. Geological Survey’s budget.

(© Copyright 2017 CBS Broadcasting Inc. All Rights Reserved. The Associated Press contributed to this report.)

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