May 01, 2010
Jim Berkland is known as the California Geologist Who Predicts Earthquakes — not by expensive seismic monitoring, but by checking daily tides and tallying up the number of lost cats and dogs in the classified ads. He is hardly alone. There are other people worldwide, both conventional and unconventional, who do predict and forecast earthquakes, too.
Jack Coles, for one, an earthquake predictor with his own link on the www.syzygyjob.com site, uses radio and TV waves to predict quakes. He hears static on the TV and radio and interprets it the way others interpret ear tones. He can also see the interference on TV. Berkland told me, “Some of Jack’s predictions have been uncanny, such as the first one I knew of. A geologist friend pointed out a small advertisement in the San Jose Mercury News from someone claiming to have predicted the Loma Prieta quake and offering his predictive services. I decided to check him out and phoned his number that evening in early 1990. ‘Oh, Mr. Berkland,’ he said when I identified myself. ‘I have been following you for years. It’s funny that just as the phone rang I got a warning for a local 4.0 quake from the static on my TV.’” Sure enough, the next morning a 4.2 quake shook Livermore, says Berkland, who can verify at least three more predictions from Coles that were on the money. “Hewlett Packard admired what he was doing and lent him a $50,000 Frequency Analyzer which was most helpful. Of course,” he adds, “there were also some notorious failures, but nobody said that earthquake prediction would be easy.”
But Coles doesn’t make it look hard. In early April 2005, I noted his forecast was posted on www.syzygyjob.com for a quake to strike the area from San Francisco to Los Angeles, California, effective through April 20, 2005. The percentage of probability was 57 percent that a shaker would occur between 4.4 and 5.5. The likely dates were April 6, 7, 8, 19, and 20. As a San Francisco Bay Area native, I had a special interest in this prediction. On April 16, I read on the Internet that a moderate 5.1 earthquake occurred 12 miles from Mettler, California.
Then, on July 28, 2005, Coles phoned Berkland and reported his heightened concern about the area of Japan. Evidently, he didn’t know that there had been at least seven quakes there of 5.0-plus near Honshu since the 6.1 on July 23 that he had correctly predicted two weeks in advance. “I continue to be amazed at how much Jack can do with so little,” says Berkland. Once again, I realized that earthquake prediction can and does work despite what conventional scientists and skeptics believe.