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2024-04-02, M7.4, Taiwan

On April 2, 2024, at 23:58:11 UTC, a powerful earthquake measuring M7.4 struck the eastern coast of Taiwan, at a depth of 35 km (refer to the map below for the location). 13 minutes later, a strong aftershock of M6.5 also occurred. This seismic activity was caused by reverse faulting near the boundary where the Philippine Sea Plate is subducting beneath the Eurasian Plate. At the time of writing, there have been 7 confirmed fatalities and numerous injuries reported. The earthquakes resulted in significant damage to buildings and widespread power outages.

The event was recorded by seismic stations operated by DIAS in the Irish National Seismic Network (INSN), see figure below.

More information is available at the below resources:

https://earthquake.usgs.gov/earthquakes/eventpage/us7000m9g4/executive

https://emsc-csem.org/Earthquake_information/earthquake.php?id=1641639

2024-03-14, M5.4, Montenegro

On the 14th of March 2024 at 03:06:47 UTC, a M5.4 earthquake occurred in Montenegro, near the border with Bosnia-Herzegovina, at a depth of 7 km (see map below). Dozens of aftershocks have occurred in the hours since, with magnitudes ranging up to M3.4. No casualties have been reported at the time of writing. The earthquake located approximately 80 km northwest of the capital Podgorica, which in 1979 experienced a M6.9 earthquake that caused widespread damage and hundreds of casualties.

The event was recorded by seismic stations operated by DIAS in the Irish National Seismic Network (INSN), see figure below.

2024-01-22, M7.0, Western China

On the 22nd of January 2024 at 18:09:05 UTC, a M7.0 earthquake occurred in the western Chinese province of Xinjiang, near the borders with Kyrgyzstan and Kazakhstan, at a depth of 9 km (see map below). A series of aftershocks up to magnitude M5.5 have also occurred. As many as 50 buildings have collapsed as a result of the earthquake, with dozens of injuries reported in the city of Almaty, Kazakhstan. No fatalities have been reported at the time of writing.

Large magnitude earthquakes (greater than M6.0) occur regularly in China, of which the largest in modern history occurred the central Chinese province of Sichaun in May 2008, causing 90,000 fatalities and several hundred thousand injuries.

The event was recorded by seismic stations operated by DIAS in the Irish National Seismic Network (INSN), see figure below.

2024-01-01, M7.5, Japan

On the 1st of January, 2024, a M7.5 earthquake occurred on the west coast of Japan, at a depth of 10 km (see map below). A series of aftershocks have also occurred. At the time of writing 48 deaths have been reported with major damage to roads and houses on the the west side of the island.

Japan experiences high seismic activity due to the subduction of the Pacific Plate beneath its eastern coast. However, the recent event occurred along the less seismically active western coast, where certain shallow faults accommodate broader plate movements. Shallow earthquakes, such as this one, typically lead to more pronounced surface ground shaking compared to deeper earthquakes, as the energy is released closer to the Earth’s surface.

The seismic stations of the Irish National Seismic Network (INSN), which is managed by the geophysics section in the School of Cosmic Physics at DIAS, detected the M7.5 earthquake, see figure below.

More information is available at the below resources:

https://earthquake.usgs.gov/earthquakes/eventpage/us6000m0xl/executive?utm_medium=email&utm_source=ENS&utm_campaign=realtime

https://www.data.jma.go.jp/multi/quake/quake_detail.html?eventID=20240101162429&lang=en

2023-12-18, M5.9, China

On the 18th of December 2023 at 15:59:30 UTC a M5.9 earthquake occurred in north-central China at a depth of 10km. The map below shows the earthquake epicentre (marked with a red circle). Over 100 deaths have been reported with rescue efforts ongoing.

The earthquake struck in the Gansu-Qinghai border region which is in north-central China. The Gansu province is within an intraplate region, but situated on the north-eastern margin of the tectonically active Tibetan Plateau. Seismicity in the Tibetan Plateau largely results from the continental collision of the India and Eurasia plates. Within 250 km of the Gansu province event, there have been 23 M5.5 and larger earthquakes since 1900. The largest of these was a M7.7 earthquake that occurred in May 1927 which resulted in approximately 40,000 fatalities.

The seismic stations of the Irish National Seismic Network (INSN), which is managed by the geophysics section in the School of Cosmic Physics at DIAS, detected the M5.9 earthquake, see figure below.

Further information can be obtained at the following links:

https://earthquake.usgs.gov/earthquakes/eventpage/us7000ljvg/executive

https://emsc-csem.org/Earthquake_information/earthquake.php?id=1594055

2023-12-10, M1.3, Donegal

At 06:48:00 UTC on the 10th of December 2023 an M1.3 earthquake occurred on the Fanad peninsula in northern Co. Donegal, Ireland. The earthquake occurred at a depth of approximately 5 km, and the epicentre was approximately 5 km east of Kerrykeel (see map below). The Irish National Seismic Network (INSN) operated by DIAS has received several reports that the earthquake was experienced by members of the public near Kerrykeel, whereby most stated that they heard a loud, thunder-like noise. The Fanad peninsula experiences regular seismic activity; the most recent earthquake to occur near Kerrykeel was M1.4 in August 2017, and the largest earthquake on the Fanad peninsula was M2.4 in January 2012.

The map below shows the location of felt reports from the public.

The event was recorded by the Irish National Seismic Network (INSN) and can be seen in the waveforms plotted below:

2023-10-07, M6.3, Afghanistan

On the 7th of October 2023 at 07:12:50 UTC an M6.3 earthquake occurred in Afghanistan at a depth of 10km (see map below for the earthquake epicentre, marked with a red circle). The earthquake struck in western Afghanistan near the city of Herat, close the Iranian border. Media reports estimate hundreds of deaths and thousands of causalities with rescue efforts still ongoing.

Afghanistan and the Middle East are prone to earthquakes due to the interaction of several large tectonic plates (Arabia, Eurasia, India and Africa). These interactions result the region experiencing several major geological processes such as subduction, faulting, mountain formation and stretching of the Earth’s crust.

The M6.3 earthquake was recorded by seismic stations operated by DIAS in the Irish National Seismic Network (INSN), see figure below.

Further information can be obtained at the following links:

https://earthquake.usgs.gov/earthquakes/eventpage/us6000ldpm/executive?utm_medium=email&utm_source=ENS&utm_campaign=realtime

https://www.emsc-csem.org/Earthquake_information/earthquake.php?id=1563081

2023-09-08, M6.8, Morocco

On the 8th of September 2023 at 22:11:01 UTC a M6.8 earthquake occurred in southwest Morocco at a depth of 19km. See map below for the earthquake epicentre, marked with a red circle. The earthquake struck in Morocco’s High Atlas mountains, about 75 km southeast of Marrakech. At the time of writing media outlets report of at least 600 fatalities mainly in mountain areas that are hard to reach.

This earthquake occurred within the Africa Plate, approximately 550 km south of the plate boundary between the Africa and Eurasia plates. The USGS estimates the fault area over which slip occurred to be about 30 by 20 km (length x width).

The M6.8 earthquake was recorded by seismic stations operated by DIAS in the Irish National Seismic Network (INSN), see figure below.

The earthquake was also detected by Raspberry Shake seismometers operated in Ireland by citizens and schools. The diagram below shows the data recorded by the station operated at St. Columba’s College in Stranorlar, Co. Donegal.

Further information can be obtained at the following links:

https://emsc.eu/Earthquake_information/earthquake.php?id=1550978

https://earthquake.usgs.gov/earthquakes/eventpage/us7000kufc/executive

2023-07-09, M5.2, Iceland

On the 9th of July at 22:22:57 UTC a M5.2 earthquake occurred in the Reykjanes peninsula in southwest Iceland, at a depth of 5km (see map below; the red circle denotes the earthquake epicentre). The Icelandic Meteorological Office (IMO) reported that the earthquake was proceeded by a seismic sequence between Fagradalsfjall and Keilir caused by a magmatic intrusion just north-east of the location of the 2021 and 2022 Fagradalsfjall eruptions. According to IMO the intrusion than led to a volcanic fissure eruption that started Monday the 10th July at 16:40 local time.

An eruption in the same area in 2021 saw lava flows and fountaining for months, with hundreds of thousands of people heading to see the volcanic activity. Icelandic Civil Defence said it is dangerous to visit the current eruption area because of gas pollution and people should stay away. The eruption site is located about half way between the capital Reykjavik and the town Grindavik on the southern coast of the Reykjanes peninsula.

At time of writing the Icelandic airport authority Isavia reported that no ash has been detected in connection with the eruption and there is therefore no impact on air traffic.

The M5.2 earthquake was recorded by seismic stations operated by DIAS in the Irish National Seismic Network (INSN), see figure below.

For further information about the earthquake see:

https://www.emsc-csem.org/Earthquake_information/earthquake.php?id=1526848

https://earthquake.usgs.gov/earthquakes/eventpage/us6000kr82/executive

Information about the volcanic eruption is available at:

https://en.vedur.is/about-imo/news/earthquake-activity-in-fagradalsfjall-area

https://www.ruv.is/english/2023-07-05-eruption-begins-387050

Map from www.ruv.is, the orange area depicts the extent of the new lava flow at time of writing.
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