Nabro volcano (Eritrea/Ethiopia) : New strong earthquake on July 1 2012 – Update July 2

Last update: July 2, 2012 at 4:54 pm by By

Read also : From the earthquake swarm until the eruption (day 1 and 2) (June 12)
Read also : Air traffic disruption and the aid of NASA HD satellite images (day 3, 4 and 5) (June 23)
Read also : Impressive new NASA pictures (June 30)
Read also : 31 people killed at the Ethiopian side – thousands more need aid (July eight)
Read also : Seismic activity continues below Nabro (September 14)

Nabro is an Eritrean volcano with NO historic eruption record. was one of the first publishers in the world detecting and describing this unexpected eruption. Our very extensive reports were also the work of our many readers who gave a lot of input.

Update 02-07-2012 at 16:35 UTC
- The best seismological agency to follow up Nabro volcano has been and still is Djibouti’s Observatoire Géophisque Arta. This agency has a number of seismographs installed at a relatively close distance to this volcano. It took a while until these were updated, but the data came in today.
- Time 16:19:12 UTC – Depth 8 km – Magnitude Ml4.9
The location of the epicenter has not been reported in coordinates, but Arta has located it to the north-east of Nabro and below another small volcano (we could not trace the name of it)
- Additionally Arta seems to use an old google map which does not show yet the magma flows of the latest eruption, which makes it difficult to compare coordinates

Epicenter map courtesy Observatoire Géophysique Arta

Update 18:32 UTC
As far as we could see on this afternoon weather and Modis satellite images, NO eruption has taken place. Certainly to be followed closely the following days.

Update 18:14 UTC
EMSC has decreased the initial depth to a new shallow 5 km, but due to the error margins even this new value will not be very accurate.  We hope to receive the normally very accurate Djibouti data later today.
The border area in between Eritrea and Ethiopia is an absolute NO GO zone controlled by the army. A lot of people were killed when the volcano erupted on June 12 2011. The erupted was detected by a M5.1 earthquake.

Update 01-07-2012 at 17:35 UTC
We have just received a USGS Notification of a new M4.8 earthquake in the immediate vicinity of the Nabro volcano. M4.8 is a very strong earthquake for volcanic circumstances. A new eruption cannot be excluded but we will have to wait until satellite images and SO2 satellite pictures are available and this can take a couple of hours.
The reported depths and epicenters have a too big error margin and can’t be trusted at this point

Nabro earthquake on July 1 2012

Live feed from the Eritrean earthquakes

SRC Location UTC Date/time M D INFO
EMSC Near The Coast Of Eritrea Jul 09 01:57 3.5 6 MAP I Felt It INFO
EMSC Near The Coast Of Eritrea Jul 09 00:50 3.9 5 MAP I Felt It INFO
EMSC Eritrea Mar 30 03:53 4.5 10 MAP I Felt It INFO
EMSC Eritrea Sep 18 09:04 5.0 10 MAP I Felt It
USGS Eritrea Sep 18 09:04 5.0 9 MAP I Felt It
EMSC Near The Coast Of Eritrea Jul 01 16:19 4.8 10 MAP I Felt It
USGS Eritrea - Ethiopia Region Jul 01 16:19 4.8 10 MAP I Felt It
EMSC Eritrea - Ethiopia Region Mar 20 19:34 3.7 2 MAP I Felt It
  • Addis Abeba - Apres un an de suivi dans la corne d'Afrique , j'ai pu deduire que dans 80% des cas , apres un seisme en Iran a proximite de la plaque tectonique , une repercution avait lieu dans les 4 jours sur la corne d'Afrique. j'espere que cette info vous sera utilite
  • EMSC Eritrea - Ethiopia Region Mar 12 01:30 3.7 1 MAP I Felt It
    EMSC Eritrea - Ethiopia Region Mar 03 04:47 3.1 1 MAP I Felt It
    James Daniell CATDAT Eritrea, Ethiopia Jun 17 07:00 5.6 10 MAP I Felt It
    James Daniell CATDAT Eritrea, Ethiopia Jun 12 07:00 5.7 10 MAP I Felt It
    James Daniell CATDAT Djibouti, Somalia, Eritrea Jan 04 08:00 5.8 33 MAP I Felt It
    James Daniell CATDAT Eritrea Sep 21 08:00 5.7 10 MAP I Felt It
    James Daniell CATDAT Ethiopia And Eritrea Aug 14 08:00 5.9 10 MAP I Felt It
    James Daniell CATDAT Eritrea Sep 23 08:00 5.8 10 MAP I Felt It
    James Daniell CATDAT Eritrea Feb 27 08:00 5.7 10 MAP I Felt It

    Satellite imagery suggests that the eruption of Nabro Volcano, which began in June 2011, continues. The volcano is located on the edge of the Danakil Desert, a remote and sparsely populated area on the border between Eritrea and Ethiopia, and few eyewitness accounts of the eruption are available. Orbiting instruments such as the Advanced Land Imager (ALI) aboard Earth Observing-1 (EO-1), which acquired these images, may be the only reliable way to monitor Nabro.

    The images show the volcano in false-color (first) and natural-color (lower second) on September 28, 2011. Heat from vents in Nabro’s central crater is visible as a red glow in the false-color image. Another hotspot about 1,300 meters (4,600 feet) south of the vents reveals an active lava flow. A pale halo surrounding the vents indicates the presence of a tenuous volcanic plume. South of Nabro’s crater, the dark, nearly black areas are coated with ash so thick it completely covers the sparse vegetation. On either side of this region is a thinner layer of ash with some bright green vegetation (exaggerated in false-color) poking through.

    Courtesy NASA Earth Observatory

    download large image (405 KB, JPEG)

    In the natural-color image, the arid landscape is light brown where it is not covered by ash. The ash is black, while a fresh lava flow, spewed out in the last two weeks of June, is dark brown. More fresh lava flows surround the active vents. On either side of Nabro’s caldera, ephemeral streams have washed away the ash, leaving light-colored channels behind—a first sign of the erosion that will reshape, and eventually remove, what the eruption built.

    Courtesy NASA Earth Observatory

    download large image (2 MB, JPEG)

    Text and images : NASA Earth Observatory


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    MMI II (Very weak shaking) ?
    People :
    Felt by persons at rest, on upper floors or favorably placed.
    MMI III (Weak shaking) ?
    People :
    Felt indoors; hanging objects may swing, vibration similar to passing of light trucks, duration may be estimated, may not be recognized as an earthquake.
    MMI IV (Light shaking) ?
    People :
    Generally noticed indoors but not outside. Light sleepers may be awakened. Vibration may be likened to the passing of heavy traffic, or to the jolt of a heavy object falling or striking the building.
    Fittings :
    Doors and windows rattle. Glassware and crockery rattle. Liquids in open vessels may be slightly disturbed. Standing motorcars may rock.
    Structures :
    Walls and frames of buildings, and partitions and suspended ceilings in commercial buildings, may be heard to creak.
    MMI V (Moderate shaking) ?
    People :
    Generally felt outside, and by almost everyone indoors. Most sleepers awakened. A few people alarmed.
    Fittings :
    Small unstable objects are displaced or upset. Some glassware and crockery may be broken. Hanging pictures knock against the wall. Open doors may swing. Cupboard doors secured by magnetic catches may open. Pendulum clocks stop, start, or change rate.
    Structures :
    Some large display windows cracked. A few earthenware toilet fixtures cracked.
    MMI VI (Strong shaking) ?
    People Felt by all. People and animals alarmed. Many run outside. Difficulty experienced in walking steadily.
    Fittings :
    Objects fall from shelves. Pictures fall from walls. Some furniture moved on smooth floors, some unsecured free-standing fireplaces moved. Glassware and crockery broken. Very unstable furniture overturned. Small church and school bells ring. Appliances move on bench or table tops. Filing cabinets or "easy glide" drawers may open (or shut).
    Structures :
    Slight damage to buildings with low standard. Some stucco or cement plaster falls. Large display windows broken. Damage to a few weak domestic chimneys, some may fall.
    Environment :
    Trees and bushes shake, or are heard to rustle. Loose material may be dislodged from sloping ground, e.g. existing slides, talus slopes, shingle slides.
    MMI VII (Very strong shaking) ?
    General alarm. Difficulty experienced in standing. Noticed by motorcar drivers who may stop.
    Fittings :
    Large bells ring. Furniture moves on smooth floors, may move on carpeted floors. Substantial damage to fragile contents of buildings.
    Structures :
    Unreinforced stone and brick walls cracked. Low standard buildings cracked with some minor masonry falls. A few instances of damage to buildings of ordinary workmanship. Unbraced parapets, unbraced brick gables, and architectural ornaments fall. Roofing tiles, especially ridge tiles may be dislodged. Many unreinforced domestic chimneys damaged, often falling from roof-line. Water tanks Type I burst. A few instances of damage to brick veneers and plaster or cement-based linings. Unrestrained water cylinders (hot-water cylinders) may move and leak. Some common windows cracked. Suspended ceilings damaged.
    Environment :
    Water made turbid by stirred up mud. Small slides such as falls of sand and gravel banks, and small rock-falls from steep slopes and cuttings. Instances of settlement of unconsolidated or wet, or weak soils. Some fine cracks appear in sloping ground. A few instances of liquefaction (i.e. small water and sand ejections).
    MMI VIII (Severe shaking) ?
    People Alarm may approach panic. Steering of motorcars greatly affected. Structures : Low standard buildings heavily damaged, some collapse. ordinary workmanship buildings damaged, some with partial collapse. Reinforced masonry or concrete buildings damaged in some cases. A few instances of damage to buildings and bridges designed and built to resist earthquakes. Monuments and pre-1976 elevated tanks and factory stacks twisted or brought down. Some pre-1965 infill masonry panels damaged. A few post-1980 brick veneers damaged. Decayed timber piles of houses damaged. Houses not secured to foundations may move. Most unreinforced domestic chimneys damaged, some below roof-line, many brought down. Environment : Cracks appear on steep slopes and in wet ground. Small to moderate slides in roadside cuttings and unsupported excavations. Small water and sand ejections and localized lateral spreading adjacent to streams, canals, lakes, etc.
    MMI IX (Violent shaking) ?
    Structures Many low standard buildings destroyed. Ordinary workmanship buildings heavily damaged, some collapse. Reinforced masonry or concrete buildings damaged, some with partial collapse. Buildings and bridges designed and built to resist earthquakes damaged in some cases, some with flexible frames seriously damaged. Damage or permanent distortion to some buildings and bridges, designed and built to normal use standards. Houses not secured to foundations shifted off. Brick veneers fall and expose frames. Environment : Cracking of ground conspicuous. Landsliding general on steep slopes. Liquefaction effects intensified and more widespread, with large lateral spreading and flow sliding adjacent to streams, canals, lakes, etc.
    Write your experience below + let us know if your property has been damaged (even slight damage) or if you have knowledge of any damage caused by this earthquake. (max. 500 characters)


    1. Mike C says:

      Do you make a habit of lifting someone else’s text, verbatim, and then claiming you wrote it?

      • Szombath Balazs says:

        Mr. Michael Carlowicz, i can’t see why are you saying this? First of all, was the first site reporting about this volcano. Not even NASA or the mainstream media did it. When news started to arrive, 90% of them were talking about a wrong volcano, not Nabro. Second, we mentionned clearly that the last post was text from us and from NASA.

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