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Institute of Seismology: May 1 quake was the strongest in the last 50 years in Almaty

06 june 2011, 11:34
Abdulaziz Abdullayev. ©Yaroslav Radlovskiy
Abdulaziz Abdullayev. ©Yaroslav Radlovskiy
According to Kazakhstan scientists, the 5.4 earthquake that hit Almaty on May 1 was the strongest in the last 50 years, Tengrinews.kz reports citing the expert of Seismology Institute Abdulaziz Abdullayev as saying at the roundtable meeting in the the Institute of Political Solutions (IPS).

He noted that this was the first strong earthquake near Almaty for the last 50 years. He also added that another important point of the May 1 quakes was that they hit during a public holiday. As per Abdullayev, this incident allowed the government and state authorities realize the level of preparedness of the population and state authorities for the natural disasters.

According to deputy director of Akhmedsafin Institute of Hydrogeology and Geoecology Pyotr Plekhanov, only one quarter of buildings in Almaty can survive strong shocks. He said that schools should teacn classes explaining how to act in extreme situations.

The expert of the Seismology Institute emphasized that seismological equipment in Kazakhstan is very old-fashioned and currently Kazakhstan scientists may predict the quakes only with 60-70 percent accuracy.

He said that improvement of the forecasts' accuracy the equipment needs to be upgraded and new employees trained. The main problem is low wages which does not help attract young experts into the area.

By Daniyar Bozov


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