Friday, June 14, 2013

Should we worry?

The two earthquakes yesterday reminded us of the seismic risk that we face living in the Vega Baja.

The Vega Baja is situated at the eastern end of the Cadiz-Alicante fault.  Seismic activity occurs in a broad swath of hundreds of kilometres that runs EW direction between the Eurasian and African tectonic plates. It is the approach of both plates that generates the earthquakes.

Untitled-1 Torrevieja area and its surroundings are especially noted for microseismicity - low intensity shakes that mostly fail to be felt by the population. They are also mostly shallow earthquakes occurring within 20 kilometres of the surface.

The map on the left shows the quakes that have been observed in the last 10 days. Note that the strongest quakes occur south of the area in North Africa and west of the area in the Atlantic Ocean

However, we must not forget the 1829 earthquake that destroyed several villages of the Vega Baja, including Torrevieja, Guardamar and Almoradí. The Government has urged these municipalities to draw up a special plan against seismic risk.

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