Pal­ghar tremors force lo­cals to stay in tents, kids out of school

Hindustan Times ST (Mumbai) - - FRONT PAGE - Ee­shan­priya MS ht­[email protected]­dus­tan­times.com

AT LEAST 17 VIL­LAGES IN A 5-KM RA­DIUS AROUND THE EPI­CEN­TRE HAVE BEEN HIT BY TREMORS SINCE NOVEM­BER

MUM­BAI: In the past three months, at least 1,000 tremors of mild in­ten­sity have hit vil­lages and ham­lets in Pal­ghar. With no dis­cernible pat­tern to when the tremors hit or what their mag­ni­tude would be, au­thor­i­ties have asked res­i­dents to sleep in tents out­side their homes, and schools to hold classes outdoors.

At least 17 vil­lages in a 5-km ra­dius around the epi­cen­tre — Dhun­dal­wadi vil­lage in Da­hanu — have been af­fected. The tremors are prob­a­bly be­ing caused by a fault line, or break in earth’s sur­face, in that area.

“The phe­nom­e­non is called an earth­quake swarm, where sev­eral low mag­ni­tude tremors are felt one af­ter the other,” said Dr Vi­neet Ku­mar Ga­ha­laut, di­re­cotr, Na­tional Cen­tre for Seis­mol­ogy (NCS), which has set up three seis­mo­graphs to study pat­terns. Ga­ha­laut said such swarms usu­ally do not de­stroy homes, but the tremors have res­i­dents on edge. Schools have stopped hold­ing classes in build­ings, and many of them re­ported a 60% drop in at­ten­dance rates .

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