Warnings about the possibility of another ‘big’ earthquake in Turkey continue to come after a 5.8 magnitude earthquake hit Istanbul in September.

Speaking at an “Are We Ready For An Earthquake” at Muğla Sıtkı Koçman University Fethiye Faculty of Business Conference Hall yesterday, Turkey-based Japanese Earthquake Expert and Architect Yoshinori Moriwaki said that Turkey could experience up to an 8.5 magnitude earthquake.

apanese Earthquake expert warns of up to an 8.5 magnitude earthquake in Turkey
Japanese Earthquake expert warns of up to an 8.5 magnitude earthquake in Turkey
Japanese Earthquake Expert and Architect Yoshinori Moriwaki speaking in Fethiye yesterday

Moriwaki also said that while Turkey’s earthquakes are less frequent and severe than countries like Japan, Turkey ranks third in the world in earthquake casualties.

Moriwaki said there were six tectonic plates that affect earthquakes in Turkey. “There is Anatolia, Africa, Black Sea—six in total. They all move separately,” he said. “Yours starts from Nepal and the Himalayan region, comes through Georgia, and then goes to Greece, Italy and Spain. That is the North Anatolian Fault Line. This could cause a maximum 8, maybe 8.5 magnitude earthquake.”

Turkey ranks third in the world for casualties

Comparing earthquakes in Turkey with those in Japan, Moriwaki said “The biggest earthquake recorded in Turkey was the 7.9 magnitude Erzincan quake. Japan had a 9-magnitude quake. When magnitude goes up one point, it means that it is 32 times more powerful. Unfortunately, when we look at earthquake casualty numbers, Turkey ranks third in the world. Japan is seventh in the world, but tsunamis are included as well.”

Japanese Earthquake expert warns of up to an 8.5 magnitude earthquake in Turkey
1. Magnitude greater than 5.5
2. Earthquake/m2
3 Number of deaths in earthquakes
4 Biggest earthquake in history

Structural problems in buildings

Moriwaki went on to talk about the  inadequacy of structures, saying that earthquake-prepared buildings can save lives and reduce damage by up to 70 percent.

“When we assess the aftermath of an earthquake in Turkey, we find some buildings are totally demolished whilst adjacent buildings remain virtually undamaged. Civil engineers play an important role in overseeing the sound construction of buildings. Inadequate buildings that do not undergo adequate controls carry a great risk in terms of loss of life in the earthquake,”

The conference was attended by Fethiye Mayor Alim Karaca, Head of Fethiye Chamber of Commerce and Industry Osman Çıralı, Fethiye Municipality officials, Fethiye Representative from the Platform of Social Disasters Nebahat Mert, political party district presidents and Non Government Organizations.

Japanese Earthquake expert warns of up to an 8.5 magnitude earthquake in Turkey
Fethiye Mayor with Yoshinori Moriwaki and Nebahat Mert,
Japanese Earthquake expert warns of up to an 8.5 magnitude earthquake in Turkey
Left to right: Nebahat Mert, Yoshinori Moriwaki, Alim Karaca and Yavuz Yopateş.

Be prepared

Fethiye was hit by two big earthquakes in 1957. The first occurred on April 24, having a magnitude on 7.1, with the second and larger event – 7.3 on the richter scale – about seven hours later on the following day.

Everyone who lives in an active seismic area should make sure they know what to do to be prepared for, and in the event of, an earthquake. For the people of Fethiye and surrounding areas, there is an AKUT Earthquake Awareness Presentation taking place at the Fethiye Culture Centre tomorrow.

Please click on the link below for more details:

AKUT Earthquake Awareness Presentation – English Language

Thank you to Yavuz Topateş for the update and photographs

Sources: karar.com /sabah.com.tr

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