Strong and shallow M5.9 earthquake hits Pakistan – India border region


A strong and shallow earthquake registered as M5.9 by the EMSC hit Pakistan at 11:01 UTC (16:01 local time) on September 24, 2019. The agency is reporting a depth of 10 km (6.2 miles). USGS is reporting M5.6 at a depth of 10 km. Updates are at the end of the report.

The epicenter was located 22 km (14 miles) NNE of Jhelum (population 164 080), 25 km (16 miles) N of Sarai Alamgir (population 44 120) and 33 km (20 miles) WNW of Bhimbar (population 342 900), Pakistan.

There are 20 040 000 people living within 100 km (62 miles), 1 million within 20 km (12.4 miles) and 30 000 within 2 km (1.2 miles).

255 000 people are estimated to have felt very strong shaking, 1 177 000 strong and 2 258 000 moderate.

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 Pakistan.

Overall, the population in this region resides in structures that are extremely vulnerable to earthquake shaking, though some resistant structures exist. The predominant vulnerable building types are adobe block and rubble/field stone masonry construction.

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

Estimated population exposure to earthquake shaking

Selected cities exposed

Regional seismicity


At least 5 people have been killed and 50 others injured, local media report. The death toll is expected to rise.

Dramatic photos and videos are emerging on social media platforms.

22:01 UTC

The death toll rose to 26 and the number of injured to more than 700.

Most people were killed due to collapsing roofs and walls.

07:20 UTC, September 27

The death toll has risen to 38.

October 3

Recent reports showed that over 7 100 homes and 200 vehicles were destroyed. The incident took lives of at least 40 people while 1 600 others suffered injuries.

Featured image credit: Google, TW/SAM


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One Comment

  1. Also of interest was that 6.0 above Puerto Rico yesterday. Note how that quake raised the 24 hour quake rate up to 75/24hours, where just prior to that the rate was only at 23/24 hours over the prior 3 days. Puerto Rico/Virgin Islands quakes are of interest to me as I think that they signal changes to the global quake pattern at times.

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