Venice Beach
Revellers at the Venice Beach California.Reuters File

Earthquake fears were stoked in California by a rather dubious viral video that 'predicted' a powerful tremor stronger than what hit Nepal will rattle America's west coast on 28 May, Thursday. 

However, experts in the scientific world have completely rubbished the claim as unfounded.

The 24-minute-long earthquake prophecy video, which has now been watched by over half-a-million people, predicts a massive 9.8 earthquake will hit California at 4pm local time on 28 May.

The clip published by Frank Hoogerbeets, the founder and president of Ditrianum Media, claims he was able to assess the 'horrific' event using a computer program called Solar System Scope.

The Huffington Post UK citing Hoogerbeets noted that his theory was based on the calculation that the 9.8 quake will strike when "no less than five planetary alignments will converge with the Earth."

He claims that even Nostradamus, the famous French apothecary and purported prophet, has made similar reference to the critical planetary positions, before an impending calamity. 

Hoogerbeets, recently, once again urged people to take precaution. "I advice people in critical areas along fault lines in the world to be on extra alert around May 28. Be prepared. Have an escape plan ready," he said on his Twitter account.

However, American science blogger Phil Plait has completely rubbished the claim a total 'baloney.'

Plait in an article published in Slate wrote: "First, there is simply no way an alignment of planets can cause an earthquake on Earth. It's literally impossible. I've done the math on this before; the maximum combined gravity of all the planets under ideal conditions is still far less than the gravitational influence of the Moon on the Earth, and the Moon at very best has an extremely weak influence on earthquakes."

Noting that the claim made by Frank Hoogerbeets was unfounded, Plait added: "This all stems from a video by someone who I believe is sincere but also profoundly wrong on essentially every level. It's been picked up by various credulous places online, then spread around by people who haven't been properly skeptical about it."

Rumours of the massive quake once again gained prominence especially after a 3.0 earthquake was reported on Tuesday morning 12 miles from Hamilton City. According to the US Geological Survey, the epicentre was 12 miles from Chico and 18 miles from Paradise, LA Times had reported.

Twitter Reactions

Harry Cook ‏@HarryCook

@whatthevegan no some lunatic predicted that an alignment will happen that will cause a 9.8 earthquake to hit California. A crazy person.

jami carignan ‏@JamiCarignan 

this was the big earthquake california was waiting for

Kyle Hill ‏@Sci_Phile 

If there's a magnitude 9.8 earthquake in California on the 28th due to a planetary alignment, I will eat this phone. Witness me.

Child Of God® ‏@AdrianTheGeat

So California is expected to have the biggest earthquake on Thursday at 4 remember when the world ended on Dec 21, 2012

Scottie VJ ‏@Scottie_steezy 

That 9.8 earthquake towards California this Thursday is scaring the heck out of me

khloie ‏@KKhloie 

Sooooooooo apparently we (as in the people of California) are all going to die on Thursday from like an earthquake. So yay no finals lol.

Jamie ‏@uglyjamie 

So.. California is just suppose to sink into the ocean due to a "9.8" earthquake and no one is worried? Alrighty then

Mauricio ‏@_Mauuii 

9.8 earthquake possibly hitting California on Thursday? Please tell me it's not true

 Watch the video below: