Guwahati ( Assam) , June 7: Assam sits right in the middle of the Very High Damage Risk Zone or Zone 5 of the earthquake zoning map of India. A stiff reminder of this fact is served from time to time in the form of repeated earthquakes.
On Wednesday, June 7, yet another earthquake of magnitude 5.2 on the Richter scale hit the northeastern state at 8.45 am . The turbulence across the Himalayan fault line continued to create panic, with this being the strongest among 13 earthquakes in the northeast region in the last 30 days.
The temblor’s epicentre was Goalpara district in Assam, which is 134 km away from the state capital Guwahati, as per the Nationals Centre for Seismology (NCS). The epicentre falls along the Brahmaputra River, which is already flowing at flood situations in many parts of Assam, including the Goalpara district.
However, the United States Geological Survey (USGS) has put the epicentre slightly south near Lakhipur along the Assam-Meghalaya border. As per NCS, the magnitude of the quake was 5.2, recorded at a depth of 14 km, while according to the USGS, the magnitude was 5.3, and the depth was 10 km. The timing of the quake was noted to be around 8.45 am by both the agencies.
Many parts of Assam (including Guwahati), Meghalaya, North Bengal, Bhutan, and Nepal felt strong tremors due to the earthquake. There were no reports of any casualties so far.
As per forecasts, the moist winds from the Bay of Bengal have continued to affect northeast India for the past two weeks. The wet weather conditions are likely to intensify from July 9 onwards with the revival of monsoon and could aggravate the flood situation unfolding in parts of Assam. An earthquake in this region is, therefore, a bigger concern for the residents and authorities.
The entire Himalayan seismic zone is vulnerable to strong earthquakes as the Indian tectonic plate is continuously wedging into the Eurasian plates at a speed of 44 mm/year. Due to this motion of tectonic plates, stress builds up, and the earthquakes are triggered to release tension. While almost all Himalayan states are at constant risk, the maximum risk areas for high-intensity earthquakes are classified as Zone-V in India, which includes entire northeastern India.
The long-term seismological analysis in the region shows that the amount of energy getting accumulated in the subduction zones is not equally dissipated through the small and moderate earthquakes happening right now. The energy has been building up, and the relief could happen in the form of a strong earthquake magnitude higher than eight in future. Scientists, therefore, urge residents and authorities to strictly adhere to the building code since more than earthquakes, poor buildings kill people!
With Agency inputs