Earthquake in Morocco : Causes

Morocco earthquake

Context: According to the Moroccan Interior Ministry, a massive earthquake that struck central Morocco has resulted in at least 2,122 deaths and 2,421 injuries. Most affected province and cities are Al Haouz province and Taroudant, Agadir, Al Hoceima (Mediterranean port city).

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About Morocco

  • It is a country in the Maghreb Region of Western North Africa that lies directly across the Strait of Gibraltar from Spain.
  • The Atlas Mountains dominate the central part of the country, while the Rif Mountains make up the northern edge.
  • The Imperial Cities of Morocco are the four historical capital cities of Morocco: Fez, Marrakesh, Meknes, and Rabat. Rabat is the current capital of Morocco.
  • Jebel Toubkal is the highest point in Morocco and is also the highest peak of the Atlas Mountains.
  • The southeastern region of the country is blanketed by the Sahara Desert, the world’s third-largest desert.
  • It is bordered by the two countries of Western Sahara to the south and Algeria to the east. It has coastlines on the Atlantic Ocean to the west and the Mediterranean Sea to the north.
  • Berbers or the Berber peoples, also called by their contemporary self-name Amazigh or Imazighen, are a diverse grouping of distinct ethnic groups indigenous to Morocco.
  • Most of Morocco north of Western Sahara, particularly along the coasts, experiences a typical Mediterranean climate, with mild wet winters and hot dry summers.
  • A Moroccan traveler, Ibn Battuta (1333-1347 AD) visited India during the reign of Muhammad-bin-Tughlaq.
  • With its acquisition of Western Sahara, Morocco came to possess some two-thirds of the world’s reserves of phosphates, used for the manufacture of fertilizers and other products.

Cause of earthquake in Morocco

  • This area is situated along the boundary of the African and Eurasian tectonic plates, where these massive plates interact, leading to the possibility of seismic activity.
  • Earthquakes in this region result from the northward convergence of the African plate towards the Eurasian plate along a complex plate boundary.
  • In the case of a particular earthquake in this area, oblique-reverse faulting occurs at shallow depths within the Moroccan High Atlas Mountain range.
  • North Africa typically experiences infrequent seismic events, resulting in minimal preparedness. The construction of buildings in this region tends to be compact and often does not adhere to earthquake-resistant construction standards.

Read also:

Earthquake Waves & Shadow ZonesTsunami
Source: The Hindu

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