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Got a magnitude 6.5 headache?

June 17, 2007|SWATI PANDEY

On June 2, an L.A.-based psychic, using dreams and divination tools, predicted that a magnitude 6.5 to 8.0 earthquake would hit the city by the end of this month. Sound nutty? Couldn't happen? Linda Curtis of the U.S. Geological Survey keeps track of quake predictions by, let's say, nontraditional scientists -- and here are five who turned out to be right at least once.

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Charlotte King

Method: Listens for changes in pitch and rhythm in low-frequency sounds; experiences sudden migraines, other aches and a "seismic flu."

Bull's-eye prediction: In December 1993, King felt severe heart pain, which led her to predict a major Southern California event a month before the magnitude 6.7 Northridge quake.

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Jim Berkland

Method: Observes tides, lunar cycles and animal behavior.

Bull's-eye prediction: A former geologist, he foresaw the "World Series quake" four days before the 1989 Series between the Oakland Athletics and San Francisco Giants. The magnitude 7.1 Loma Prieta quake struck Oct. 17, right before the third game.

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Zhonghau Shou

Method: Studies cloud patterns and shapes.

Bull's-eye prediction: Nicknamed the "Cloud Man," he predicted in August 1999 that a major quake would hit east of L.A. Two months later, a magnitude 7.0 quake occurred in the Mojave Desert.

Marian Campbell

Method: Observes animal behavior, particularly birds hitting her home or car windows, and the tracks of snails and slugs.

Bull's-eye prediction: On Oct. 1, 2002, she predicted that a magnitude 5.0 quake would hit California somewhere along the 40th parallel. Two days later, a magnitude 6.4 temblor hit the Gulf of California.

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Jerry Hurley

Method: Has migraine headaches and other symptoms that he believes come from sensing the flow of magma -- molten rock -- below the Earth's surface.

Bull's-eye prediction: On the morning of June 14, 2005, he predicted that a magnitude 5.0 or higher earthquake would occur off the California coast. That night, a magnitude 6.7 quake occurred.

-- SWATI PANDEY

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