Frost quakes reported in Ontario amid deep freeze
Published Tuesday, January 6, 2015 9:34PM EST
Last Updated Wednesday, January 7, 2015 9:47AM EST
As much of southern Ontario remains in a deep freeze, some residents in the Greater Toronto Area have reported hearing loud booms, which experts say may be frost quakes.
The phenomenon, also known as cryoseism, can occur following precipitation and bitterly cold temperatures.
"Ice can be very rigid at cold temperatures, and as it expands it’s trying to find room for itself and it can build up tremendous pressure," Earthquake Canada seismologist Cathy Woodgold previously told CTV Toronto. She said the pressure will often result in the ice breaking, producing a loud sound that can shake the ground.
"It can be like an earthquake," she said.
The University of Toronto's Climate Lab has been tracking the loud bangs for the past week.
The last reported frost quake happened west of Brampton on Monday, when temperatures dropped to a low of -14 C. Another one was also reported in Peterborough on the same day.
According to the climate lab, frost quakes are expected to continue Tuesday night, as the mercury plunges to a low of -15 C.
Frostquake is expected to continue tonight, with deep freeze, soil saturated with water, and low snow cover contributing to the loud bangs— UTSC Climate Lab (@UTSCClimateLab) January 7, 2015