Home / News / World /  Multiple earthquakes have moved Turkey by few meters, experts explain reason

The President at the National Institute of Geophysics and Volcanology has claimed that massive earthquake which striked Turkey could have moved the country by few meters, as reported by Italy 24.

Turkey is in one of the world's most active earthquake zones as it is situated atop major fault lines that run along the Anatolian, Arabian, and Eurasian plates of the globe. The earthquake struck along the East Anatolian fault zone, a region near the junction of the Anatolia, Arabia and Africa plates, according to the USGS.

In the report, Professor Carlo Doglioni explained that the Anatolian plate has been slipping horizontally in relation to the Arabica plate towards the southwest on the same plane. This slip generated a type of fault that seismologists call “shallow transcurrent" with a hypocenter, i.e. the deep place where it breaks out, between 15 and 20 kilometers. 

“In other words, Turkey in the estimates has actually slipped by five to six meters compared to Syria," he said.

Also Read: Turkey-Syria Earthquake LIVE

In another report, he said that the earthquake may have caused the country by three metres south-west.

As cited by the national news, Dr Doglioni also said, “What we call the Arabian plate has moved about three meters in a northeast-southwest direction relative to the Anatolian plate."

However, the professor further added that the most precise data is not yet available and added that only then an analysis can be made. 

Also Read: Turkey Earthquake: How long people can survive in quake debris? Experts explain

In another report by Daily Mail, Dr Bob Holdsworth, a professor of structural geology at Durham University said that that plate shift was 'perfectly reasonable' given the magnitude of the earthquake which striked the country. 

He also told the Daily Mail that the faults that slipped in Turkey are strike-slip faults which involve mainly horizontal displacements, adding that the overall offsets in the region of 3 to 6 metres proposed is reasonable.

Speaking on the intensity of the initial two powerful earthquakes, Doglioni said, it is estimated that the first quake was about 500 times higher than by the 2016 Amatrice earthquake while the second was 30 times higher than in Irpinia in 1980. 

According to Alex Hatem, who is a geologist with the USGS in Golden, Colo said that the energy released in Monday’s 7.8 earthquake is comparable to the energy released in the 1980 Mount St. Helens volcanic eruption, as reported by WSJ. 

The first 7.8 magnitude quake occurred at 04:17 am at a depth of about 18 kilometres (11 miles) near the Turkish city of Gaziantep, which is home to around two million people. It was followed by a slightly smaller 7.5 magnitude tremor and many aftershocks.

The quake which occurred in a seismically active area known as the East Anatolian fault zone, has produced damaging earthquakes in the past. “Almost all of Turkey is really seismically active," Eric Sandvol, a seismologist at the University of Missouri said. “This is not something new to the country."

Turkey was struck by another major earthquake in January 2020 — a magnitude 6.7 that caused significant damage in the eastern part of the country. In 1999, a 7.4 magnitude quake struck near Istanbul and killed an estimated 18,000 people.

Meanwhile, currently the death toll from a massive earthquake that struck Turkey and Syria climbed above 15,000, as rescuers raced to save survivors trapped under debris in freezing weather.

Officials and medics told AFP said 12,391 people had died in Turkey and 2,992 in Syria from Monday's 7.8-magnitude tremor, bringing the confirmed total to 15,383.

Some of the heaviest devastation occurred near the quake's epicentre between Kahramanmaras and Gaziantep, where entire city blocks lay in ruins. Turkey said almost 3,000 buildings had collapsed in seven different provinces, including public hospitals.

A famous mosque dating back to the 13th century partially collapsed in the province of Maltaya, where a 14-story building with 28 apartments that housed 92 people collapsed

Many countries have stepped up including India, Japan, the US, Britain, Germany, and others sent their search teams to quake-hit countries for help and assistance. With the freezing temperature and under the rubble for days now, disaster medicine experts have said most rescues occur in the first 24 hours after the earthquake. After day one, survival chances drop as each day passed. Access to water, air, and weather conditions are crucial factors for survival, The Associated Press reported.

(With inputs from agencies)

Catch all the Business News, Market News, Breaking News Events and Latest News Updates on Live Mint. Download The Mint News App to get Daily Market Updates.
More Less
Recommended For You
Get alerts on WhatsApp
Set Preferences My ReadsWatchlistFeedbackRedeem a Gift CardLogout