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10 sensible earthquakes struck Almaty in the past day

02 may 2011, 12:42
0
©Vladimir Dmitriev
©Vladimir Dmitriev
©Vladimir Dmitriev
©Vladimir Dmitriev
©Vladimir Dmitriev
©Vladimir Dmitriev
The first earthquake stuck in the morning on May 1, the Unity Day. At 8:30 a.m. residents of Almaty and nearby areas felt a tangible 5.4 magnitude earthquake. It was the first and the strongest earthquake of the past day.

People got scared because earthquakes of this magnitude are not common for Almaty. Residents are more or less used to experiencing 1.5-2 magnitude earthquakes. But a shock exceeding 5 in magnitude got many to start thinking about living in tents outside their homes for a couple of days or at least about packing food, water, clothes and documents in a bag that would be easy grab on the way out of their apartments, in case more shock would follow.

Director of Kazakh Institute of Seismology Tabatkan Abakanov told Tengrinews.kz that seismic activity of the area is fading: weak aftershocks would follow for some time, but there is no threat of a destructive earthquake and no reason to panic.

Some believe this, other prefer to take extra precautions.

One of the reasons behind the worries of Almaty resident is that most of the people know that Almaty has already once been flattened to the ground by a massive earthquake.

On December 22, 2010, it was exactly 100 years after the destructive Kemisk earthquake flattened fort Verny (this is how Almaty was called then). Only several buildings out of the whole city remained standing then. The destruction was massive, but victims were few because buildings were low-rise and almost entirely wooden.

Technologies of construction in earthquake-prone areas have been moving forward and new extra strong construction materials have been developed since then. Both the technologies and the materials have been rigorously used in construction of high rise metal-concrete-and-glass buildings of Almaty.

But especially after the recent disaster in Japan many people of Almaty are taking their earthquake safety very seriously.

The first 5.4 earthquake with the epicenter 75 km north-east of Almaty struck at the depth of 23 km at 8:30 a.m. on May 1.

The second 4-magnitud shock followed in a little over half an hour at 09:05 a.m. Its epicenter was at the depth of 3 km also to the north-east of Almaty.

The third 3.2-magnitude shock followed in a little over one hour at 10:07 a.m. It centered at the depth 1 km in approximately the same area.

The fourth shock came several hours later at 1:41 p.m. and was greater in forth than the previous one. It was a 4.0-maginitude earthquake with an epicenter 68 to the north-east of Almaty at the depth of 12 km.

The fifth quake came at 3:13 p.m. and was a sensible 4.8 in magnitude. Its epicenter was 73 km from Almaty in Yenbekshykazakh region of Almaty Oblast at the depth of 20 km.

The sixth shock was also a tangible 4.8 in magnitude. It happened at 5:35 p.m. according to the European-Mediterranean Seismological Centre. Its epicenter was 74 km to the north-east of Almaty at the depth of 1 km.

The seventh earthquake came on May 2 at 2:29 a.m. Its magnitude made 4.5, according to the European-Mediterranean Seismological Centre. The epicenter was in approximately the same area as all the previous ones: 76 km to the north-east of Almaty at the depth of 10 km.

The eighth earthquake was felt at 5:27 a.m. Its magnitude was 4.1 – a small decrease against the previous one. According to the European-Mediterranean Seismological Centre epicenter was 70 km from Almaty at the depth of 1 km.

The ninth earthquake was a repeat of the eight one that came less than half an hour later at 5:52 a.m.

The tenth and so far the last earthquake of the series came at 8.31 a.m. It was a 4.1 magnitude shock 74 km away from Almaty at the depth of 4 km, according to the European-Mediterranean Seismological Centre.

The Eminencies Ministry of Kazakhstan said in its press-release that the aftershocks will continue, but will be gradually fading in magnitude.

The series of earthquakes caused no destructions or victims, according to the reports.

The Eminencies Ministry is closely monitoring water reservoirs and rivers to make sure no polluting elements are discharged into the water as a result of the earthquakes. “No disruptions in the work of water and hydraulic facilities or increase of water level in rivers have been detected. All the emergencies services are in the state of advanced readiness,” the press-release said.

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