Powerful 7.2 Magnitude Earthquake hits Eastern Turkey – Oct 23, 2011

Very Strong 7.2 Magnitude Earthquake hits Eastern Turkey today (Sunday). USGS originally gave the magnitude as 7.6 but later corrected it to 7.2.

The epicentre was at the village of Tabanlı, north of Van city. Tremors were felt throughout eastern Turkey and as far away as Armenia, Georgia, Iran, Iraq and Syria. The USGS estimated that more than 19.1 million people may have felt the earthquake, including some 406,000 people near the epicenter who may have perceived ‘violent’ to ‘extreme’ shaking.

Buildings had collapsed and 50 people had been injured. One death was confirmed. Officials at Turkey’s Kandilli Observatory said the death toll was estimated to be between 500 and 1,000, although few specific numbers were available several hours after the earthquake.

Some Emergency teams were trying to rescue people believed to be trapped in buildings. Phone lines and electricity had been cut off.

There is not yet information on remote villages. Serious damage and casualties were also reported in the district of Celebibag, near Ercis. Also Van’s airport was damaged and planes were being diverted to neighboring cities.

Videos: Van’da Turkey earthquake today


Magnitude 7.2
  • Sunday, October 23, 2011 at 10:41:21 UTC
  • Sunday, October 23, 2011 at 01:41:21 PM at epicenter
Location 38.628°N, 43.486°E
Depth 20 km (12.4 miles) set by location program
  • 17 km (10 miles) NNE (32°) from Van, Turkey
  • 117 km (72 miles) N (349°) from Hakkari, Turkey
  • 128 km (80 miles) SSE (163°) from Karakose (Agri), Turkey
  • 194 km (120 miles) SSW (207°) from YEREVAN, Armenia
Location Uncertainty Error estimate not available
Parameters Nph=0, Dmin=0 km, Rmss=0 sec, Gp= 0,
M-type=centroid moment magnitude (Mw), Version=1
Event ID usb0006bqc

Earthquakes M 6+

From September 22. 2011 to October 23, 2011

6.2 Alaska on  Sept. 14 / 6.0 Cuba , 6.1 Nw. Zealand , 6.2 Japan , 7.3 Fiji all on Sept. 15 / 6.6 Japan , 6.0 Japan both on Sept.16 / 6.9 India on Sept. 18 / 6.4 Tonga on Sept. 22 / 6.2 Argentina on Oct. 6 / 6.1 Kermadec Islands on Oct. 7/6.8 Bali on Oct.13/6.7 Papua Nw. Guinea, 6.1 Amurskaya Russia both on Oct.14/6.3 Papua Nw. Guinea on Oct.18/ 6.1 Hokkaido Japan Region on Oct.21 / 7.4 Kermadec Islands Region on Oct. 21/ 7.2 Eastern Turkey on Oct. 23 /

Update October 24, 2011

Numerous aftershocks of M4 + 2 x M5.6 and a strong M6.0

138 people were killed, 350 people reported injured and 970 buildings were destroyed (these numbers will certainly rise further as many people are still buried in the rubble of collapsed houses) – in depth report at earthquake-report

Source and author: earthquake.usgs.gov *      (youtube)

8 responses to “Powerful 7.2 Magnitude Earthquake hits Eastern Turkey – Oct 23, 2011

  1. It’s just terrible all these earthquakes, my heart and prayers go out to all those affected… Keep Calm and be Safe Peace to ALL.


  2. Seismic activity world over at the moment.
    Seems to be more pressure at the west side. Ring of fire has gone very quiet. Wouldn’t be surprised if Japan has a rather bad quake soon.
    Have concerns for the lower region of Russia as well.
    I read somewhere that the southern part of Africa is splitting but can’t seem to find the information again.

    Be safe


  3. There was a 7 near NZ on the ring of fire a few days ago. Kermadec Islands. http://www.iris.edu/seismon/


  4. I expect the region around NZ will have significant earthquakes one after another once the plates are no longer in grid lock. Pressure is building.
    The indo-australian plate is tilting so the water mass between NZ and Australia has to settle somewhere. So if it’s raising on the NZ side then sea water has to move onto eastern Australia.
    I am also worried about the pacific. What happens when undersea quakes happen and huge cracks form deep under sea. All coast lines are at risk.
    Lets just hope that the volcanoes keep venting!

    Be safe


    • Jay

      I live in NZ and there is no risk to the NZ plate side, but the coast of QLD Australia is on alert after small tremors have been felt between 5-6 magnitude, but at 30km deep.

      NZ has been given the all clear up until January 2012, after our bi monthly geological report (which im subscribed to).



  5. Hey Jay, thanks for the insight. Still a little worried for Canteburians (those around the Christchurch area in NZ). There are shallow earthquakes almost everyday and usually more than one. There are apparently reports of new hot springs there too. There is a good site showing all the activity over the last year or so… http://www.christchurchquakemap.co.nz
    I live in Auckland further north which is seismically quiet right now. The volcanic field underneath us is active however. There are just over 50 volcanic cones in and around the City of Sails (Auckland). The largest and most iconic is Rangitoto in the gulf a few miles from the downtown area seafront which I can see from the window. It is the youngest (600 – 800 years old) and its mass is equal to all the other 50 combined. Let’s hope we get a bit of warning before the next one arrives!!!


    • Chris don’t worry about the Auckland plateau, right now geologists are focused on taupo after small tremors have been occurring beneath the old cone, they are trying to determine if the pressure releases are magmatic or seismic, as they are noticing pressure drops in rotoruas hot springs and mudpools, indicating the pressure is building somewhere else. At least you dont live in taranaki, im literally in the shadow of mt taranaki and even our mountains on watch after some major rock slides earlier this year that weren’t due to seismic activity. The Auckland plateau is supposed to be extinct, not dormant like taranaki, but hey people always get stuff wrong

      stay safe


  6. I want nothing more than everyone to be safe warm and sheltered.
    I too have read about the hot springs and new hot spots in NZ and it is a great concern. If I was able i would vacate everyone to a safer place.
    I worry more when things go quiet.

    As for wanting to get more warnings have you tried taking thermal readings of your surrounds? Also some say to stay alert for gas smells but not all gas that is emitted from the ground has a smell that we can detect.

    Stay Safe