VIDEO: Two Bay Area earthquake faults found to be connected

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SAN FRANCISCO (KRON) — A new study finds the most dangerous earthquake fault in the San Francisco Bay Area is connected to another fault. Together, the two faults could produce a major earthquake.

A team from the U.S. Geological Survey has discovered a previously unknown strand of the Hayward Fault that connects to a less active fault to the north.

It is the first direct evidence that the two faults are linked. The discovery was published on Wednesday, October 19 in the journal Science Advances.

The Hayward Fault has long been considered a threat because it runs under densely populated neighborhoods east of San Francisco.

Scientists say if the Hayward and neighboring Rodgers Creek faults broke simultaneously along their combined 188 miles, they could produce a magnitude 7.4 earthquake.

FILE: David Schwartz, geologist for the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS), walks along the Hayward Fault in a parking lot in Hayward, California.
FILE: David Schwartz, geologist for the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS), walks along the Hayward Fault in a parking lot in Hayward, California.
FILE: Sign notifying people they are standing on the Hayward Fault stands at the children's zoo area at the Oakland Zoo in Oakland, California.
FILE: Sign notifying people they are standing on the Hayward Fault stands at the children’s zoo area at the Oakland Zoo in Oakland, California.

Associated Press contributed to this report.

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