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Italy earthquake claims 247 lives

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Rome, Aug 25: A strong earthquake of 6.2 magnitude that struck the mountains in central Italy on Wednesday, has resulted in at least 247 deaths and affected several villages and towns, according to Civil Protection Department officials.

More than 360 others were injured and many were still believed to be buried under rubble with over 4,300 rescuers deployed to find them.

Earlier Prime Minister Matteo Renzi said that “At least 120 people have been killed and 368 injured in an earthquake that hit a mountainous area of central Italy.” italy-quake-wefornewsHowever, “This is not a final toll,” Renzi warned.

A series of aftershocks occurred in the region, toppling scores of buildings, according to reports.

Many persons are still believed to be trapped beneath building debris, while rescue operations are underway to reach remote villages and towns levelled in the quake.italy-wefornews

The Prime Minister had paid tribute to the volunteers and civil defence personnel who rushed to the scene in the mid-night and used their bare hands to rescue people.

The earthquake struck at a shallow depth of 10 km. The epicentre of the quake was in Norcia in Umbria, about 170 km north-east of Rome, while the hardest hit were the towns of Amatrice, Accumoli and Pescara del Tronto.ITALY EARTHQUAKe-wefornewsMuch of the town of Amatrice was reduced to rubble. Amatrice is famous for its traditional all’amatriciana pasta sauce, and was gearing up to hold a festival celebrating the recipe this weekend, CNN reported.

The town is popular with holidaymakers and most of the 2,500 people left displaced by the earthquake were said to be visitors.

The Italian branch of the Red Cross pressed 20 ambulances and sniffer dogs to affected areas alongside the Italian Defence Ministry.

Wefornews Bureau

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Earthquake hits Madhya Pradesh’s Singrauli region

Earthquake in Madhya Pradesh’s Singrauli: The earthquake hit the region at around 7.44 PM on Tuesday.

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An earthquake of magnitude 4.6 struck Madhya Pradesh’s Singrauli region on Tuesday. The earthquake hit the region at around 7.44 PM on Tuesday. No casualties or loss of property has been reported so far.

(This is a breaking news story; more details awaited)

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Earthquake to hit NCR creates fear among people

The scientists reached the conclusion of a devastating earthquake hitting Uttarakhand based on a study conducted in 2017.

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The news of an earthquake measuring more than eight on the Richter Scale may strike Delhi-NCR with Gurugram as its epicentre between April 7 and 15 has been viral on the internet.

Another prediction of a devastating quake to hit Uttarakhand, Himachal Pradesh and Nepal is also circulating which has instilled fear and panic among the people of the states.

The argument put forward by Piyush Rautela, Executive Director of Disaster Mitigation and Management Centre (DMMC) is “Frequent mild earthquakes in the hills of Uttarakhand should not be dismissed as common occurrences but treated as pointers to a major earthquake which is long overdue in the central seismic gap of the Himalayan front spanning Himachal Pradesh, Nepal and Uttarakhand.”

Rautela said the damage will be more in the thickly populated urban areas where there has been a rapid and unplanned growth of population and infrastructure.”

A message has been circulating of a warning that an earthquake measuring 9.1 on Richter scale would strike Delhi-NCR between April 7 and April 15 attributing the information to American space agency National Aeronautics and Space Administration. But it is a hoax as scientists are yet to find ways to predict earthquakes.

Seismologists, however, are of the view that no proven method exists for predicting earthquakes with any accuracy and the best way to save lives from Earth’s wrath is to beef up construction standards and educate people about seismic risk.

The scientists reached the conclusion of a devastating earthquake hitting Uttarakhand based on a study conducted in 2017.

The surface of the earth sits on several gigantic tectonic plates that move by a few centimeters known as faults that develop each year. Most devastating earthquakes had occurred in the Indian sub-continent. In fact, geographical statistics show that at least 54 percent of India’s land is vulnerable to earthquakes and India has four seismic zones, I, II, III, IV and VII being the lowest and V being the highest.

But for sure preparedness remains the best defense against devastating earthquakes.There must be an investment in preparedness such as early warning systems, tsunami systems, relocation of people from locations deemed to be vulnerable to disasters.

Five districts in Uttarakhand having population approximately 3-3.5 million on the Indo-Nepal and Indo-Tibet borders come in seismic zone V.

A State-wide mega mock disaster management drill was conducted by the Gurgaon district administration in December 2017. The governments of Delhi and NCR region should play a proactive role by checking the authenticity of the prediction by the National mitigation Disaster Management institution and engaging themselves to participate in the mitigation of natural disasters.

The central government should also discourage the construction of a skyscraper on the lines of Japan which also falls in the seismic zone.

 

By Arti Bali

Sr Journalist

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6.8-magnitude quake hits Bolivia: USGS

Pacific Tsunami Warning Centre (PTWC) boffins issued a warning and forecast hazardous waves from the coast.

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A HUGE 6.8 magnitude earthquake has struck Bolivia in the Ring of Fire. It occurred near Tarija in the south of the country at a depth of 344 miles. The USGS estimates there is a 34% chance of damage and fatalities.

Its website states: “Overall, the population in this region resides in structures that are resistant to earthquake shaking, though vulnerable structures exist.

“The predominant vulnerable building types are adobe block and rubble/field stone masonry construction.”

The South American country is located in the Ring of Fire, a basin of the Pacific Ocean prone to seismic activity.

It occurred 96 miles from the town of Kokopowhich, home to about 20,000 people.

Pacific Tsunami Warning Centre (PTWC) boffins issued a warning and forecast hazardous waves from the coast.

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