5th quake in a month in Palghar, govt on its toes
Mumbai: Early on Saturday, Palghar felt tremors for fifth time in a month. Fortunately, like in the earlier four instances, the magnitude of the weehour earthquake was not much—2.9 on the Richter scale.
To study what is causing these repeated earthquakes in Palghar, India Meteorological Department (IMD) officials plan to install a seismograph in the area to get real-time updates tremors and measure the shocks. Also, a team of IMD, along with state officials, will undertake a survey of the area on December 11 and 12.
“A seismograph will be placed next week and it will monitor earthquakes for the next few months. Currently, if the shocks are of a magnitude less than 2 on the Richter scale, the distant seismographs cannot measure them accurately. In Maharashtra, stations like Mumbai, Latur and Pune have seismographs,” said K S Hosalikar, deputy director general of meteorology, adding that IMD Mumbai can measure quakes that are of magnitude 3 and above on the Richter scale.
“The not-so strong tremors can be felt locally, but not measured as the waves do not percolate. That is why we want to place a machine in Palgharto pick up small vibrations and know the frequency of the earthquakes,” said Hoslaikar.
started with an earthquake for Palghar as the first tremor was felt on January 1
July, a tremor of a 2.8 magnitude on the Richter scale occurred with its epicentre in Raigad. The earthquake was felt in parts of Kalyan and Dombivli *Two tremors felt
The state is expected to provide all the local logistics like a room for installation of the machine and transportation. There already is a seismograph machine placed in the district but this time, the BMC want to place it at a different location, in the interiors.
Meanwhile, the state government has directed the collector’s office to take precautionary measures like spreading awareness on what needs to be done in case there is an earthquake. “While these earthquakes with 2-3 magnitude may not be much disastrous, but it can leave cracks in ‘kutcha’ houses,” said an IMD official. The Nov 11 quake left cracks in some houses
IMD officials said that these tremors are due to local crustal movements and are known as micro activity. Dr V Subramanyan, a former IIT Bombay professor who has conducted several earthquake projects, said the quakes are not surprising. “The west coast from north Konkan to Kanyakumari falls in seismic zone 3, which means it is earthquake prone. This occurs owing to distribution of seismic features like geological faults and Mumbai has quiet a few faults. Only earthquake’s with a magnitude of 5 and above are known to cause damage to life and property,” he said.