Household earthquake sensor could save lives

PASADENA, Calif. The U.S. Geological Survey is testing a shoebox-sized sensor that records the earth's movement and sends a link back to USGS headquarters. The boxes are to be installed in level places of people's homes, like the garage.

Already there are 90 such sensors installed in homes around Northern California. The program has made 35 available for installation in Southern California and is looking for volunteers to install them in their homes.

"We'd like to have as many volunteers as possible - hundreds, even thousands - so we can select among them for places that would be most effective," said USGS scientist Doug Given.

The greatest need for boxes is in Northern San Diego and Southern Orange County neighborhoods, but sensor could be a major help for everyone when the next "big one" strikes.

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