The University of Illinois released the study this week. It found that more than 80,000 people would be injured by a 7.7-magnitude quake and an estimated 2.6 million homes would be uninhabitable.
Professor Amr Elnashai (ah-MER' el-nah-SHY') says he found that authorities in Illinois and seven other states are not prepared to repair and retrofit bridges that would likely be damaged.
The New Madrid zone is primarily in northeast Arkansas and southeast Missouri. The fault has produced powerful earthquakes in the past.
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