MEMPHIS, TN - Tennessee's first commission devoted to dealing with a major earthquake is scheduled to begin reviewing disaster preparations next month.
The West Tennessee Seismic Safety Commission was established after concerns over the state's ability to respond to a major earthquake along the New Madrid Fault.
The 12-member commission can accept grants, hire experts, make recommendations and review building codes, disaster preparations and public education efforts.
The fault is a geological break line at the center of one of the most active earthquake zones in the United States.
The fault produces hundreds of small quakes annually, most of which are too weak for most people to notice. But scientists say a damaging New Madrid quake could occur at any time.