More than 100 people injured, 600 buildings damaged after M5.6 earthquake hits Albania, the strongest in 30 years

albania-earthquake-damage-september-2019

A strong and shallow earthquake registered by the EMSC and USGS as M5.6 hit near capital Tirana, Albania (population 375 000) at 14:04 UTC on September 21, 2019 (16:04 LT) at a depth of 10 km (6.2 miles). There are more than 2 540 000 people living within 100 km (62 miles). The quake was followed by M5.1 at 14:15 UTC and more than 200 aftershocks over the next 24 hours.

2 000 people are estimated to have felt severe shaking, 215 000 very strong, 764 000 strong and 245 000 moderate.

This is the strongest quake to hit Albania in the last 30 years, country's Ministry of Defence said, adding that over 500 houses and 100 apartment buildings suffered damages at a different scale.

105 people were injured in Tirana and Durres. 12 of them are hospitalized as of September 22.

Health Minister said most were hurt while running out of their homes in panic.

Structural damage included large cracks in the sides of buildings, fallen air conditioning units, chunks of masonry breaking away, crushed cars, and broken items inside people’s homes, Exit.al reports.

Albania earthquakes September 21 – 22, 2019. Credit: Google, TW/SAM

M5.6 earthquake near Tirana, Albania on September 21, 2019. Credit: Google, TW/SAM

Estimated population exposure to earthquake shaking

The USGS issued a yellow alert for shaking-related fatalities and economic losses. Some casualties and damage are possible and the impact should be relatively localized. Past yellow alerts have required a local or regional level response. Estimated economic losses are less than 1% of GDP of Albania.

Overall, the population in this region resides in structures that are a mix of vulnerable and earthquake resistant construction. The predominant vulnerable building types are unreinforced brick with timber floor and nonductile reinforced concrete frame construction.

Recent earthquakes in this area have caused secondary hazards such as landslides that might have contributed to losses

Selected cities exposed

Regional seismicity

Featured image credit: Google, TW/SAM

If you value what we do here, create your ad-free account and support our journalism.

Share:


Your support makes a difference

Dear valued reader,

We hope that our website has been a valuable resource for you.

The reality is that it takes a lot of time, effort, and resources to maintain and grow this website. We rely on the support of readers like you to keep providing high-quality content.

If you have found our website to be helpful, please consider making a contribution to help us continue to bring you the information you need. Your support means the world to us and helps us to keep doing what we love.

Support us by choosing your support level – Silver, Gold or Platinum. Other support options include Patreon pledges and sending us a one-off payment using PayPal.

Thank you for your consideration. Your support is greatly appreciated.

Sincerely,
Teo Blašković

$5 /month

  • Ad-free account
  • Clean user interface and fast browsing
  • Direct communication with us via chat and email
  • Suggest new features, content and applications
  • Early access to new apps and features

$50 /year

$10 /month

  • Ad-free account
  • Clean user interface and fast browsing
  • Direct communication with us via chat and email
  • Suggest new features, content and applications
  • Early access to new apps and features

$100 /year

$25 /month

  • Ad-free account
  • Clean user interface and fast browsing
  • Direct communication with us via chat and email
  • Suggest new features, content and applications
  • Early access to new apps and features

$200 /year

You can also support us on Patreon

support us on patreon

or by sending us a one-off payment using PayPal:


Commenting rules and guidelines

We value the thoughts and opinions of our readers and welcome healthy discussions on our website. In order to maintain a respectful and positive community, we ask that all commenters follow these rules:

  • Treat others with kindness and respect.
  • Stay on topic and contribute to the conversation in a meaningful way.
  • Do not use abusive or hateful language.
  • Do not spam or promote unrelated products or services.
  • Do not post any personal information or content that is illegal, obscene, or otherwise inappropriate.

We reserve the right to remove any comments that violate these rules. By commenting on our website, you agree to abide by these guidelines. Thank you for helping to create a positive and welcoming environment for all.

Leave a reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *