x Abu Dhabi, UAEWednesday 24 January 2018

Earthquake tremor claims that hit RAK disputed

Experts say that an earthquake this week in Iran did not affect the UAE at all, despite reports from some Ras Al Khaimah residents who said they felt tremors.

RAS AL KHAIMAH // The National Centre of Meteorology and Seismology today denied reports about mild tremors that residents of Ras Al Khaimah reportedly said they had felt yesterday.

Some people in the emirate said they felt the disturbance yesterday afternoon, according to reports. The earthquake itself was registered in southern Iran, nearly 400 kilometres away from the UAE.

However, the Abu Dhabi-based meteorology centre said its seismic monitoring network had not registered any activity in the UAE. Considering that the Iran earthquake was weak and its epicentre was far away, it is not possible that it affected the UAE, a spokesman at the centre said.

"Most likely people misunderstood information on our website, which reported an earthquake 385 kilometres north of Ras Al Khaimah," the spokesman said.

While the wording may have misled some people to believe that the event happened in the UAE, it was only in Iran, he said. The 4.2-magnitude earthquake hit near the Iranian town of Jiroft. The area is known to be seismically active and is on a major fault line, with moderate to strong seismic activity.

In contrast to its northern neighbour, the UAE has relatively minor earthquake activity. In January of last year, residents were awakened by tremors from a 7.1-magnitude quake with an epicentre in Pakistan. In March of the same year, there was a minor 2.6-magnitude earthquake in Fujairah.


Detailed information about seismic activity in the UAE and neighbouring countries is freely available online and can be followed in real time on the Abu Dhabi meteorology centre's website.