Namibia: Earth Tremor Rocks /Ai-/Ais Vicinity

The Ministry of Mines and Energy on Saturday 16 January revealed that an earthquake was recorded in Namibia, some 10 kilometres southwest of /Ai-/Ais during the afternoon hours of Thursday.

The occurrence that took place at 16h59 was recorded on two seismic stations of the Namibian Seismology Network, specifically Aus, Ariamsvlei and Kamaggas which is a South African seismic station.

This was announced by Deputy Executive Director of the Geological Survey of Namibia, Gloria Simubali, who added that a small magnitude earthquake was recorded on Wednesday while three more earth tremors were recorded on Thursday around the same area.

She said the tremor was shallow at a depth of less than 10 km. "The earth tremor registered a preliminary local magnitude of 3,8 as recorded at latitude (Y) -28,029° south and longitude (X) 17,426° east," Simubali noted.

A minor earthquake is considered one that falls between 3 and 3,9 on the Richter scale and generally no likelihood of damage to buildings is observed in minor quakes.

/Ai-/Ais lies at the southern end of the Fish River conservation area in the Namibian portion of the /Ai-/Ais Richtersveld Transfrontier Park.

Moreover, Simubali explained that the country has different seismic zones, for instance the coastal escarpment and topographically high zones of the Namaqua and Damara Orogenic belts.

"It is expected that there might be an increase in earthquakes activities in our seismic zones as the rainfall experienced across the country, led to recharge of our groundwater. This increases pore pressure and reduces frictions along the fault planes causing earthquakes to occur," she detailed.

If people find themselves indoors when they feel an earthquake, Simubali advised that they should try going outside safely when possible, otherwise stand near door-frames or find refuge under tables.

More additional precautionary measures that people should consider include watching out for falling objects, staying and facing away from windows and if outdoors, finding a spot well clear of buildings, trees and power lines.

More From: Namibia Economist

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