Massive deadly earthquake in Pakistan - Satellite Spot images used for detection of the destruction

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Also written by Jens Skapski.

Update 16:24 UTC - October 1 : The Pakistan Disaster Management Authority has released new data of the fatalities after both earthquakes of last week. A Total of 825 people have lost their live (780 during and after the mainshock and 45 during and after the aftershock). This new report arrived after our 09:24 update. This makes the Pakistan earthquake sadly enough the most deadly one since the Japan Tsunami.

Screen Shot 2013-10-01 at 15.31.41

Relief aid is being parachuted over the hardest hit areas by the Pakistani army

Update 09:24 UTC - October 1 : The death toll of 375 makes this earthquake the 8th highest in the last 5 years after: Haiti 2010 - ca. 95,000-110,000 ;; Tohoku 2011 - ca. 18,500 ;; Yushu 2010 - 2968 ;; Sumatra 2009 - 1117 ;; Van 2011 - 604 ;; Chile 2010 - ca 525-550 ;; Mentawai 2010 - ca. 497 ;; Pakistan 2013 - ca. 375-400.

The 375 killed correlates quite well with our initial estimate of 400 through James Daniell. Although economic loss estimates have not been seen, they should be in the order of $72-117 million as stated in the first few hours.

We urge people to donate to aid organizations, given the widespread destruction.

Update 07:54 UTC - October 1 :
Very interesting article in the website where the UN agency has made a damage assessment based on Satellite Spot Images from some of the seriously damaged areas. Satellite assessment is not a conclusive way of detecting damage as it has to be completed with surveys on the ground. Due to the complicated political situation on the ground the current assessment gives a very good overview of the most affected areas. Based on these satellite images we can clearly see that towns and villages have only been hit partially. Others escaped the drama (see image below where squares in red means destruction and blue no visual damage.
Check the full article here or click on the map to be linked.

Destruction in Gajar, Awaran, Balochistan, Pakistan as detected by Satellite Spot Images

Destruction in Gajar, Awaran, Balochistan, Pakistan as detected by Satellite Spot Images

Update 13:02 UTC : A couple of other data obtained by government sources from the mainshock :
Fatalities : 375 Injured : 815
Those who have been following this report from the beginning may think : again other numbers ! Well, that's exactly how we feel ourselves in this tragedy. Whatever the numbers will be, this earthquake is and will remain one of the most tragic earthquakes of the last couple of years.

Update 08:17 UTC - September 30
"Authorities" did report earlier today that Saturday's aftershock left 30 people dead and 150 injured.
Links to Interesting articles :
Earthquake-hit Awaran: After sporadic attacks, relief supplies start trickling in

Update 13:02 UTC : New data mentions a death toll of 34 and +100 injured

Update September 29 07:17 UTC : The death toll of yesterday's aftershock has climbed to 25. 60 more injuries are reported too.

Image courtesy @Senator_Baloch

Image courtesy @Senator_Baloch

Update 15:31 UTC : Al Jazeera, normally well informed in Islamic circles,  reports that the number of fatalities of today's aftershock has increased to 22 and at least 50 have been injured. 2 villages were completely destroyed following the Khuzdar authorities. warns his readers that this is a very partial report as many areas are under control of separatists and accordingly authorities have only incomplete data of what happens there.
The death toll from the mainshock has been increased to 515 (number most cited by international correspondents, but in reality nobody knows exactly. Sad, very sad ...

Update 13:39 UTC : Reports from the earthquake zone are mentioning an additional 12 fatalities (today's aftershock)

Update 09:48 UTC : The Al Jazeera video below describes what the people and the hardest hit areas are currently witnessing.

Update 09:03 UTC : Islamic Relief has dispatched a team to the disaster area. The initial response will address the needs of 1000 families. Due to the complex security situation in Baluchistan, access is still being negotiated...

Screen Shot 2013-09-28 at 11.26.14

Update 08:31 UTC : GDACS, an organization monitoring nature disasters all over the world has calculated that today's aftershock (following Al Jazeera who was in contact with the Pakistani Seismological Agency a new earthquake not an aftershock) will inflict additional damage.
Whether this earthquake is an aftershock or not is not important at all, an aftershock is also an earthquake and as this one occurred in the same region (a little north of the mainshock).

Screen Shot 2013-09-28 at 10.45.56

Update 08:31 UTC : Qlarm, a theoretical damage and loss engine has calculated that an additional 0 to 300 people may be killed by this aftershock. 0 to 1000 may have been additionally injured. Why the 0 ? Because of the uncertainties of the preliminary data and also because of the living conditions after an aftershock.

Update 08:23 UTC : The current aftershock was felt less than the mainshock because the magnitude was "only" M6.8 compared to M7.7 on Tuesday. The very shallow depth of 14 to 20 km (differs from agency to agency) makes the earthquake less felt in a wider radius (like Karachi and the Emirates) but can be very destructive in the epicenter area. The earthquake type is a devastating one too, the main acceleration is horizontal which makes houses and infrastructure who have not been build with earthquakes in mind will collapse easily.

Update 08:12 UTC  : Based on our own visitor record at this moment, the earthquake was less felt than the mainshock on Tuesday. Aftershocks never stopped after the mainshock on Tuesday but all of them on one exception had Magnitudes below M5 (one shortly after the mainshock had M5.9). Today's aftershock will certainly further damage the area and a lot of unstable constructions who where already damaged in the mainshock and aftershocks will certainly be flattened today. Most people will be camping outside their houses exactly because out of fear for aftershocks but we also know that the rescue people digging into the rubble have a big risk of being buried themselves.

NEW Massive aftershock on Saturday
On Saturday another massive aftershock has struck the Awaran area. USGS reports a preliminary Magnitude of 6.8, EMSC 7.0 and Geofon 6.6. This means that everything which was still standing upright in the disaster zone would likely be grounded.
The epicenter region is the same then the mainshock on Tuesday. Preliminary depth is reported as 14 km. As the earthquake is an aftershock, the same depth is almost certain as the mainshock = a horror scenario for this region.

WE TRULY HOPE THAT THE INTERNATIONAL COMMUNITY WILL WAKE UP AFTER THIS AFTERSHOCK TO HELP THESE UNFORTUNATE PEOPLE. Many of the devastated areas have not been helped with medical and relief goods since Tuesday. This earthquake is a HUMANITARIAN DISASTER for this part of Pakistan. The security risk to bring relief and rescue aid to this area are an additional disaster (Separatists groups and Taliban are fighting the Pakistani government for regional independence) 

Screen Shot 2013-09-28 at 09.57.55

Security fears hold back relief work in quake-hit Pakistan

QUETTA, 26 September 2013 (IRIN) -
Many times before, Abdul Rashid, 30, a general practitioner, has volunteered in emergency situations.
“I believe it is my duty to use my medical skills to help. I went to Sindh Province in 2011 to help flood victims; I helped victims of the 2007 cyclone in Balochistan; and I worked in Pakistan-administered Kashmir as a medical student after the 2005 earthquake for months,” Rashid told IRIN.
But now, while he is eager to reach the district of Awaran in southwestern Balochistan Province, the area worst hit by a magnitude 7.7 earthquake that struck in the afternoon of 24 September, Baloch friends have advised him against going. “Ethnically, I am Punjabi. And Awaran town, and the district in general, is a stronghold of Baloch nationalist groups, locked in battle against state forces,” he said. “They have regularly attacked non-Baloch people before.”
The security situation is a concern for many international humanitarian agencies trying to help the victims of the earthquake, which has killed at least 348 people and wounded hundreds more, with the death toll still rising.

Fears of violence
The Baloch ethnic group has long had nationalist aspirations, complaining it is excluded and marginalized by the government and does not receive its fair share of revenue from the natural resources in Balochistan. The region has a long history of insurgency, which has intensified since the 2006 killing of Baloch nationalist leader Nawab Akbar Bugti. Baloch nationalists blame the Pakistan military for his death.
“The security situation is always unpredictable anywhere in Pakistan,” Haseeb Khalid, senior media officer at the Islamic Relief’s office in Pakistan, told IRIN. “In Awaran, there may be some security threats for relief and aid workers, especially for those who are non-Baloch.”
Since Islamic Relief already had a presence in the area and could work with local people, Khalid said, “the situation may be safer for us.
On 25 September, unknown persons opened fire on a team of doctors and paramedics attempting to reach the quake zone. There were no casualties.
According to an update the same day by Islamic Relief, this was just one of three recent incidents since 23 September in which assailants opened fire in Balochistan against aid workers or security forces, leading to reported deaths.
As he flew into Awaran on 26 September to assess the situation, Maj-Gen Mohammad Saeed Aleem, chairman of the National Disaster Management Authority, also came under attack; his helicopter was targeted by rockets, according to media reports. He escaped unharmed.
“The truth is we are scared and won’t be going in,” the head of an NGO based in Karachi, who asked not to be named, told IRIN. “This is bad for affected people.”

Toll rising
The security concerns come on top of other challenges. The logistics of assessment and rescue are daunting, with Awaran district spread over 21,000sqkm of inhospitable territory, which houses around 300,000 people. It is served by an inadequate road network and takes hours to reach, even from the closest major cities.
“No one has come to help us, and we urgently need shelter, food, water and medical help,” Inayat Baloch told IRIN over a crackly phone line, from just outside Awaran town. He said his house had been reduced to a pile of rubble. “My three-year-old son has a broken leg; he has been crying in pain but there is nothing I can do.”
The number of confirmed deaths, meanwhile, continues to rise as reports come in from remote areas.
The PDMA says “almost all homes” in Awaran town and nearby surrounding areas are destroyed or damaged. Reports from other parts of the district are coming in, with some media accounts saying 80 percent of mud houses in the district have been destroyed. Most of the homes in the rural areas of Awaran are made of unbaked mud bricks.
The extremely poor medical infrastructure in the district does little to help. “There are just no means to help the injured, and because of the security situation health workers won’t go there,” said Jan Muhammad Buledi, a spokesman for the provincial government.
The Chief Minister of Balochistan has reportedly asked nationalist groups for calm, but a local administrative official in Awaran, who wished to remain anonymous, said: “This may not be effective.”

As the PDMA and UN begin a rapid assessment of needs, major humanitarian organizations are weighing their options.
Awaran “is not easily accessible by road due to damaged road links and the security situation, as non-state armed groups are present in the area and one attack on the medical team has been reported,” Arif Jabbar Khan, Oxfam’s country director, said from Islamabad. “It is going to be challenging for the aid workers given the security situation and inaccessibility issues,” he said.

In the meantime, people are desperate.
“My parents, two sisters, their husbands and small children are out there,” said Nazir Ahmed, a native of Awaran who works in Quetta. “I can’t even get in touch because the telephone networks are so bad. I understand they are all out in the open, but this is information from others.” He said getting to his home village could take “three days or more” since many roads were just dirt tracks.

Update 15:22 UTC : The death toll has risen to 515 according to officials within Pakistan in English press, 600 is still quoted in some Urdu press, and 400 is still common place.
Approx. 400-600 deaths have occurred as a result of the earthquake (assuming that double counting has not occurred).

As previously stated by our theoretical models after the earthquake of between 400-990 dead depending on occupancy from 38% to 97%, around $72-117 million damage is expected to have occurred using the rapid loss model of James Daniell. 20000 houses are said to have collapsed or been severely damaged of the 65000 houses in the area. The loss estimate still remains.

We are waiting on other news from agencies. Many of the reports are discussing the Taliban influence and the mud volcanoes, however, little is being mentioned as to the relief processes in place for the approx. 100000 homeless and 300000 affected people.

Update 07:43 UTC : The number of fatalities from the earthquake is approaching that of the Van earthquake in 2011 (604 dead). Numbers of the the fatalities are varying depending on the source. The government reported earlier today that 400 people were killed. Our (to be found reliable) Urdu news source states at this moment 600 fatalities (they have computed this based on the confirmed deaths in the different districts).
Independent screening is of what is happening exactly is almost impossible as all this happens in Taliban dominated Baluchistan where external NGO's do not work because of the security risk. Multiple security incidents have been reported since the earthquake.
The Taliban is trying to enforce their own relief efforts to the surviving victims, reports are saying. These reports are also stating the the relief of the Taliban arrived much earlier than the relief from the government.

Image courtesy and copyright

Image courtesy and copyright

Update September 27, 07:43 UTC : Balochistan Chief Minister Dr Abdul Malik Baloch, cutting short his Britain tour, reached his homeland and said he will approach the world community for aid of the people affected by the earthquake.
Talking to media at Karachi airport, he said the government will valve into all available resources to overcome the situation occured by the devastating earthquake, adding the cordiality of nations will be appealed for the aid of the quake-hit people.
At least 10,000 to 15,000 houses collapsed as a result of powerful earthquake; hence, the death toll is feared to rise, the Chief Minister noted declaring that he will establish his camp in the quake-hit area.

Update 16:08 UTC : Another "Mud Volcano Island" has appeared on the Makran coast.  The Island emerged off the Ormara coast, a private TV channel reported on Wednesday. According to the World Wildlife Fund (WWF), the new island appeared near River Basil.
On Tuesday, an island had emerged off Gwadar coast which was given the name ‘Zalzala Jazeera’ (island earthquake). - Source here

Image courtesy and copyright

Image courtesy and copyright

Update 15:24 UTC : OCHA (United Nations) reports today from Pakistan :
The military and local authorities continue rescue and relief activities in the affected region. The PDMA has dispatched 2,600 tents, 1,700 food packets, 300 blankets, 1,700 plastic mats, 300 mosquito nets and 300 jerry cans to the affected area. The provincial health department is providing health services through mobile health units.
The National Disaster Management Authority has provided 5,000 tents and 7,000 food packs for the affected people in Awaran and Kech districts.
WHO has provided kits for the delivery of emergency primary health care services to more than 100,000 people, while WFP has arranged for the delivery of high-energy biscuits to the affected people.
Various security incidents have been reported in the affected area. Plans to conduct humanitarian and security assessments are under way.

Update 15:11 UTC : Patrick Fuller from the IFRC (International Red Cross) wrote earlier today :
Thousands of people have spent a second night in the open following the devastating earthquake which killed +350 people and injured over 500 in a remote, mountainous area of Balochistan, southwest Pakistan.
The army has mobilised food supplies, medical teams and tents from the regional capital Quetta. The lack of medical facilities in the affected area has meant that seriously injured people have to be airlifted to hospitals in Karachi and other towns.
Not only is the region remote, but security concerns mean that both the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies (IFRC) and the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) are unable to directly conduct humanitarian operations in the area. However, the Pakistan Red Crescent Society has a well-established network on the ground and is able to operate freely.
On Wednesday, a team from the Red Crescent’s nearest disaster management cell in Lasbela district was deployed to the affected area. Two further disaster response teams from the adjoining districts of Kharan and Gwadar have been mobilized and a team from the Red Crescent provincial headquarters in Quetta will be deployed today along with two health teams with ambulances.

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“The Red Crescent has disaster preparedness stocks in the region that can be mobilized rapidly, but the biggest challenge is reaching the affected area,” says Mike Higginson, acting head of delegation for the IFRC in Pakistan. Most of the Red Crescent supply hubs are hundreds of kilometres away. “It takes between 18-20 hours to travel to Awaran from Quetta and it’s unclear how many villages surrounding the epicentre still haven’t been reached. Some may not be accessible by road.”
The Sindh Branch of the Red Crescent is also supporting relief efforts. A medical team has been deployed at Awaran today via helicopter in coordination with the National Disaster Management Authority.
At this stage, the Pakistan Red Crescent Society is planning to support about 7,000 people with emergency shelter support in the form of tents and tarpaulins as well as essential non-food items including blankets, kitchen sets and plastic jerry-cans.
Given the scale of destruction, further anticipated needs are most likely to be materials for building transitional shelters, health and care services and further supplies of food and essential non-food items.

Update September 26, 09:26 UTC : We will not write updates for every new number of increased fatalities, but we will point to the exact number (based on our sources) in the title

Update 14:07 UTC : We are sorry to report that the number of fatalities has increased to 343.

Update 12:27 UTC : Some more information about the new Gwadar island who was shaped during the shaking of the earthquake. The new island is probably a "mud volcano", pushed upwards by methane gas during the violent shaking of the earthquake. Historic facts are mentioning a same island forming after a 1945 earthquake. Scientists are surprised that such activity occurred more than 400 kilometers from the epicenter. The island is not a normal island but a huge amount of mud that will be eroded by waves and weather and will again disappear in the ocean like it also did in 1945.

Image of the new island courtesy Pakistani Government

Image of the new island courtesy Pakistani Government

Important Update 12:04 UTC : The number we have given below only represents the counted fatalities in the Awaran district. Another 42 bodies have been reported from the Kech district. Statistically, this means that the Awaran, Pakistan earthquake is sadly enough the deadliest earthquake since the Van earthquake (Turkey) on October 23, 2011.

Update 11:59 UTC : The Pakistani newspaper TheNews reports that : The death toll in Balochistan from the powerful 7.8 magnitude earthquake which struck southwest Pakistan has risen to 285 after twenty bodies of madrassa students were recovered from Awaran.

Update 10:47 UTC : Below an overview map of the epicenter and the towns as well as the population density in the greater epicenter area. Click on the map to watch in full format.

Click on this map to watch it in full format

Click on this map to watch it in full format

Update 10:20 UTC : Another recent video from the devastation. As we were ahead of the main news distributors (we get our fatalities data from the local Urdu news sources), the number of death are still the same however we have to stress that tens of people are still missing.

Update 08:52 UTC : The video from gives a mind blowing impression of the destruction in Arawan, Balochistan. Does the Pakistani government has to call in International relief ? We think yes, but every nation has the feeling at the start that they can handle it all alone. We have seen data that is reporting 40,000 collapsed houses! At least International Financial help would be very welcome for this poor area in Pakistan. The current earthquake is exceeding the fatalities of all earlier earthquakes this year, a sad record.

Update 08:28 UTC : Queen Elizabeth expressed grief and sorrow over the earthquake in Pakistan. In her statement, the Queen requested Prime Minister of Britain, David Cameron to immediately contact government of Pakistan and ask about the updates regarding the relief work to the people hit by earthquake in Balochistan, Pakistan. (Source :

This impressive seismogram has been recorded by the Geofon seismograph at Kabul, Afghanistan

This impressive seismogram has been recorded by the Geofon seismograph at Kabul, Afghanistan - The many powerful aftershocks can also be seen on this seismogram

Update 07:57 UTC : Awaran district has an estimated population of around 300,000, scattered over an area of more than 21,000 square kilometres. “Over 50% of urban and around 90% of rural areas of the district have been ravaged by the quake,” Mir Quddus Bizenjo, the deputy speaker of Balochistan Assembly, had told reporters by phone. He had put the death toll at 150-plus in Awaran alone. Army and civil rescuers were sent to the affected region to pull out casualties as residents said dozens of people are trapped under the rubble of their collapsed houses. The weather conditions are very favorable for extended rescue operations. The main problem for those alive under the rubble are lack of drinking water however. 72 hours is the normal timeframe that people can be found alive below the rubble. We are now 20 hours after this deadly earthquake struck.

Update 07:29 UTC : District Administration and the Provincial Disaster Management Authority are also doing its utmost to provide relief and succour to the suffering people in the area.  Provincial government spokesman Jan Muhammad Buledi said: "We are seriously lacking medical facilities and there is no space to treat injured people in the local hospitals.  "We are trying to shift seriously injured people to Karachi through helicopters and others to the neighbouring districts."
The scale of the territory involved is daunting. Awaran district has an estimated population of around 300,000, scattered over an area of more than 21,000 square kilometres (8,000 square miles).

Update 06:32 UTC on September 25  : The death toll has further increased to 283 people. 400 are being reported as injured. The number will probably increase further today as SAR (Search and Rescue) teams are searching the rubble. No word so far of people who are missing (probably also hundreds).  Army units have been dispatched to the epicenter area. The weather in the area is good which implicates a smooth relief assistance. We have noticed many powerful aftershocks which make rescue efforts very dangerous as many houses are on the brink of collapse.
The earthquake has affected 6 districts in Baluchistan.
600 army soldiers are currently helping in the rescue and relief efforts.
The seriously injured people are helicopter rescued to hospitals in Karachi.

Image courtesy and copyright

Image courtesy and copyright

Update 20:32 UTC  : The army dispatched 300 soldiers, rescue and medical teams and a helicopter to the worst-hit areas. Chief Minister Abdul Malik said an emergency had been declared in Awaran, seven to eight hours' drive from Quetta, the provincial capital.
Fatalities data are varying depending the source. Indian sources are now stating 80 dead and 80 injured. Most Pakistani sources who have their own information channels are maintaining the 150 number.


Image courtesy and copyright

Image courtesy and copyright

Update 17:37 UTC : Based on many local reports we can now confirm that at least 150 people have been killed. SAR work is continuing and the death toll will almost certainly increase the following hours.

Update 17:05 UTC : More and more reports in Urdu are citing +150 fatalities. Iran Urdu Radio reports also that 150 people have died . Several aftershocks (some strong) have been felt . Only Pakistan reports fatalities. We maintain the 50 fatalities in our title because we want

Update 16:37 UTC : Communication systems are still disrupted and army helicopters are flying assistance teams to the earthquake hit area. Below a picture of Gwadar Island as it was seen after the earthquake today.

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Update 16:26 UTC : The well informed Indian news-site Outlook India writes : Forty people were killed and dozens injured when a powerful 7.8-magnitude earthquake hit southwestern Pakistan today, with officials saying casualties could increase near the epicentre in a remote area in Balochistan.
Forty deaths were reported from quake-hit areas of Awaran district, chief military spokesman Maj Gen Asim Bajwa said in a message posted on Twitter. Other officials were quoted by news channels as saying that dozens were injured when mud-brick houses collapsed in Awaran and Khuzdar areas of Balochistan province. Six bodies were found in Awaran bazar and four more recovered in far flung villages of the district, said Deputy Commissioner Abdul Rasheed Baloch. "I fear more people are trapped inside collapsed houses," he said.
Ghulam Baloch, a local administration official from Khuzdar, said, "Houses and shops have collapsed and the casualties could increase. An emergency has been declared in Awaran and some other parts of Balochistan."

USGS Red Pager information

USGS Red Pager information

Update 16:07 UTC : We do not expect much new information from Pakistan the coming hours as darkness has fallen en as SAR (Search and Rescue) work in Pakistan will be very difficult. This mainly because the power will certainly not have been restored in the the greater epicenter area.
National Seismic Monitoring Centre Director Zahid Rafi told PTI that the tremors were of “great intensity” in Quetta and in some remote areas of Balochistan.      “The affected areas include Jaffarabad, Noskhi, Kalat, Windar, Naseerabad, Phunjgur and Mastung,” he said.

Update 15:46 UTC : Based on the Catdat calculations of James Daniell, the estimated damage for this earthquake will be around 100 million  US$

Update 15:38 UTC : NO new information or numbers so far. Most media are still mentioning a maximum of 35 people killed, our Urdu source has mentioned 50. The new island (an island who also appeared after the megathrust quake in 1945 and then vanished again) is making more news value than the earthquake itself, this also because news from the epicenter area takes a long time to reach the outside world.

Update 14:46 UTC : Normally well informed Iranian sources are now reporting an increased death toll of 50. More people remain below the debris which means that the death toll will climb further the coming hours.

Update 14:41 UTC : On the Gwadar coastline, the quake created a small island about half a mile into the sea near an area called ‘Jhanda’, according to Express News. The newly appearing island is said to have a mountainous terrain rising up to a hundred feet. A large crowd was seen gathering at the site to see the new island. This information has been given by normally well informed press sources however ER finds it hard to believe and looks for further confirmation.

Update 14:24 UTC : Around 30% of houses possibly destroyed in the worst parts of Arawan district.

Update 14:20 UTC : We expect the fatalities and injured number still to rise sharply. Our own estimates are better than scenarios of other theoretical engines. Part of the reason is the time of the day the earthquake occurred. We are estimating less than 1000 fatalities based on the current epicenter, Magnitude and depth data.

Update 14:16 UTC : A M5.5 aftershock will probably create more damage and will be possibly life threatening for those buried under the rubble of the collapsed houses. All people who got safely out of their houses will surely not enter them anymore for some time.

Around 200000 people are without power and are in the worst affected epicentral area. This is around 45 times less than the 2005 Kashmir earthquake.

32 dead and 54 injured. Balochistan has imposed emergency measures. We are still waiting for confirmation of these figures.

Screen Shot 2013-09-24 at 16.06.15

Balochistan earthquake (Courtesy: The Tribe)

30 dead and 54 injured. Balochistan has imposed emergency measures.

The weather will be around 22 degrees at night, to 35 degrees in the day for the coming week with no rain. Shelter will need to be provided accordingly as well as water supplies.

Many injuries are confirmed.

Around 400 fatalities are expected using theoretical studies and the current USGS shakemap. There still exist huge uncertainties of course.

Nearly 100% of buildings are adobe in this region according to Maqsood and Schwarz (2008). In their mean vulnerability index - this region came up one of the highest in Pakistan. Thus, it can be said that the vulnerability of such housing is high.

A lot of damage has occurred in the Khuzdar district in the Arawan area

The economic losses will be less than $1 billion USD. It is likely they will be around $100 million USD, however further modelling will be done in the coming hours.

Still at 10 fatalities.

Another M5.8 aftershock has struck the area .

The sparse population (about 50 times less populated than that of the epicentral region in Kashmir 2005) and time of day (4.30pm local time), will have reduced casualties significantly. 10 people however are reported dead currently.

It should be remembered that this is a rural area and thus the population is sparse. Given the length of the fault break, it is likely that Arawan district was quite heavily hit. .

Mw7.7 and 20km depth has been reported from USGS..

Update:- As a yardstick - the Pakistan earthquake of 2005 was Mw7.6 and at 10km depth. The fault break for Mw7.8 should be of the order of 150-180km long using scaling laws..

Update:- The duration of the quake was close to 2 minutes .

Update:- At least 2 people have been killed.

Update:- Many houses have collapsed, and no power is reported in parts of Balochistan. It is unknown the extent of these collapsed houses.

Update:- M7.8 and 15km depth has been given by IIEES.

Update:- The maximum intensity in Karachi has been around III so it is highly unlikely that there will be any damage there.

Update:- A number of aftershocks have occurred which is making life difficult for inhabitants. An M5.9 and M4.7 earthquake have been the largest so far, however it can be expected that aftershocks will plague the region in the coming hours and days.

No damage has been reported in Iran. Dubai in the UAE reported swinging of buildings.

Update: PAGER is predicting in excess of 1000 fatalities using a theoretical model. Internal models are predicting less than 1000 fatalities, (around 440) but with huge differences currently due to the uncertainty of intensities (and differences in magnitude)

Update: The earthquake occurred at 16:30 local time, which is one of the best times for an earthquake to strike... many people will hopefully been out of the house and out of schools, and agricultural workers will still hopefully have been outside.

Update: Roofs of schools in Arawan district collapsed.

Update: Pakistani news report that a lot of houses were damaged in Arawan area. Many people were injured and are on the way to hospital.

Update: Reports from Pakistan indicate that a lot of houses in western Pakistan were damaged. We expect more damage, also in other parts of Pakistan.

Update: USGS rose the Magnitude to 7.8 again. The quake was also felt in UAE and Oman. So far, we don't have any reports from greater epicenter area.

Update: Panic was spreaded in Dehli and other Indian cities. People ran to the streets.

Update: According to PAGER, 16.000 people living in the area of strongest shaking.  105.000 in area of Intensity VII and VIII.

Update: USGS has changed the value from M 7.8 to M 7.4, still very dangerous. The quake was also felt in parts of India.
USGS ShakeMap shows a violent shaking in epicenter area, which is only sparsely populted with some villages (Balochistan Region).

A massive very dangerous earthquake with M 7.5  occurred in southern Pakistan.


Nearby Cities
69km (43mi) NNE of Awaran, Pakistan
118km (73mi) NW of Bela, Pakistan
172km (107mi) S of Kharan, Pakistan
174km (108mi) NW of Uthal, Pakistan
793km (493mi) ENE of Muscat, Oman

Most important Earthquake Data:

Magnitude : 7.7

Local Time (conversion only below land) : 2013-09-24 16:29:49

GMT/UTC Time : 2013-09-24 11:29:49

Depth (Hypocenter)  : 20 km

Depth and Magnitude updates in the list below.

Share your earthquake experience (I Have Felt It) with our readers.
Click on the "I Felt It" button behind the corresponding earthquake. Your earthquake experience is not only important for science, but also for people in the area as well as our global readership.

Refresh this list
SRC Location UTC Date/time M D INFO
USGS Awaran, Pakistan Sep 24 23:41 4.0 26 MAP
  • Gawader - i felt that as if i am felling dizzy.. my mom was slepping she felt that and she got up i then realised that earth is shaking so we all came out from our house.. i fell down two time when earth was shaking.....
  • Khuzdar - It was the strongest in life experienced. The room was shaking badly. The dogs started to bark 20 seconds before the earthquake started. It lasted for nearly a minute. My house is badly damaged.
  • EMSC Pakistan Sep 24 23:41 4.2 25 MAP
    USGS Awaran, Pakistan Sep 24 23:22 4.2 25 MAP I Felt It INFO
    EMSC Pakistan Sep 24 23:22 4.2 25 MAP
    EMSC Pakistan Sep 24 22:38 4.9 10 MAP
    GEOFON Pakistan Sep 24 22:38 4.9 13 MAP
    USGS Awaran, Pakistan Sep 24 22:38 4.8 22 MAP I Felt It INFO
    USGS Khuzdar, Pakistan Sep 24 21:59 4.9 23 MAP
    GEOFON Pakistan Sep 24 21:59 4.9 10 MAP
    EMSC Pakistan Sep 24 21:59 4.9 25 MAP I Felt It INFO
    EMSC Pakistan Sep 24 19:54 4.7 2 MAP
    USGS Khuzdar, Pakistan Sep 24 19:54 4.7 25 MAP I Felt It INFO
    GEOFON Pakistan Sep 24 19:54 4.8 10 MAP I Felt It INFO
    USGS Awaran, Pakistan Sep 24 18:57 4.4 25 MAP I Felt It INFO
    EMSC Pakistan Sep 24 18:57 4.4 25 MAP I Felt It INFO
    GEOFON Pakistan Sep 24 18:12 4.6 44 MAP
    USGS Awaran, Pakistan Sep 24 18:12 4.3 24 MAP
    EMSC Pakistan Sep 24 18:12 4.5 10 MAP
    USGS Awaran, Pakistan Sep 24 17:20 5.5 24 MAP
    GEOFON Pakistan Sep 24 17:20 5.4 10 MAP
    EMSC Pakistan Sep 24 17:20 5.5 20 MAP I Felt It INFO
    EMSC Pakistan Sep 24 15:12 4.8 10 MAP
    GEOFON Pakistan Sep 24 15:12 4.8 10 MAP I Felt It INFO
    USGS Awaran, Pakistan Sep 24 15:12 4.9 27 MAP I Felt It INFO
    EMSC Pakistan Sep 24 14:08 5.3 10 MAP
    GEOFON Pakistan Sep 24 14:08 5.3 10 MAP I Felt It INFO
    USGS Khuzdar, Pakistan Sep 24 14:08 5.2 27 MAP
    USGS Khuzdar, Pakistan Sep 24 13:01 5.6 27 MAP
    GEOFON Pakistan Sep 24 13:01 5.6 37 MAP I Felt It INFO
    USGS Awaran, Pakistan Sep 24 12:42 5.0 25 MAP
    GEOFON Pakistan Sep 24 12:42 5.2 41 MAP
    GEOFON Pakistan Sep 24 12:07 5.0 51 MAP
    EMSC Pakistan Sep 24 12:07 4.9 10 MAP I Felt It INFO
    GEOFON Pakistan Sep 24 11:36 5.9 15 MAP
    EMSC Pakistan Sep 24 11:36 5.9 20 MAP
    USGS Awaran, Pakistan Sep 24 11:36 5.9 24 MAP
    USGS Awaran, Pakistan Sep 24 11:29 7.4 22 MAP
  • Gajar - We visited Gajar the biggest city in Mashkai District. The whole city is devastated with only a few structures standing. Even those that stand are severely damaged and inhabitable. Relief is minimal. They are in urgent need of bedding, mosquito nets, housing and the water supply through rebuilding of wells needs to be restored
  • EMSC Pakistan Sep 24 11:29 7.7 20 MAP I Felt It INFO
  • gurgaon - There was mild shaking in Gurgaon
  • Gurgaon - I felt shaking.
  • Karachi - was in a 4 story building, water of aquarium was shaking and slight shaking of building
  • Delhi - On the fifth floor of a building and we felt it shake twice
  • Ahmedabad - Light shanking of tower too many people feel
  • India / Delhi - Shaking chair, felt as if dizzy
  • Ahmedabad - too bad 4 after shock and I am on 9th floor...
  • gurgaon - very mild shaking
  • Delhi - At 16:55 hra
  • Dubai - felt @ 14F
  • Abu Dhabi - Curtains moved on the higher floors 21st
  • Gulshan-e-Iqbal, Karachi - My chair was shaking side by side and its still dizzy
  • karachi - building and we felt it shake 3rd time...
  • Muscat, Oman - Didnt felt by me, but others hav feel it. its in 2 stoke. very weak. at 3.45pm today
  • FTC Karachi - everyone felt it for a few minutes and got out of our offices
  • Ahmedabad - It is very week. but we felt that it was earthquack
  • Dubai - We were in the last floor (25th) on building in Dubai, UAE. We felt the shaking, but it was short
  • Al-Barsha, Dubai, United Arab Emirates - I was sitting at my office desk on the 5th floor and felt the chair move for 3-4 seconds. I thought my colleague was moving my chair. We have not evacuated our building. I want to go home and sleep.
  • noida - very mild shaking experienced
  • chabhar,sistan va balochistan,I.R.IRAN - I feel Weves from east to west about 1-2 minuts
  • Dubai - It was a mild shake
  • Delhi - I felt my chair shaking. my son refused it but then it shook again and we could feel it.
  • Nawabshah - Chakar aarahe thy
  • Karachi, Gulistan-e-Jauhor - i was smooking in my room suddenly i observe that im moving just like m drunk.
  • new delhi - on there is an article about the earthquake and also a photo of the island that rose out of the sea at Gwadar.
  • Muscat-OMAN - I was working in my office at Muscat Grand Mall, while writing my email I felt that the letters are sliding on my screen and start feeling the shake during some seconds again and again...Felt dizzy.... May Allah helps all who ever faced the earthquake in the center of the eye!
  • Delhi - Felt as IF somebody pushed my Chair slightly
  • Karachi - We were on 14 floor when strong tremor felt.
  • Karachi - We were in our office on the 17th floor, felt that my chair is moving and everyone stood up and evacute the building..
  • GEOFON Pakistan Sep 24 11:29 7.6 42 MAP


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    I felt the shaking *
    Country where you felt the earthquake *
    City/Village where you felt the earthquake *
    Street or suburb (area) where you felt the earthquake
    Latitude (area) where you felt the earthquake
    Longitude (area) where you felt the earthquake
    Shaking Strength *
    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.
    Tell us your experience and how many seconds the shaking lasted + let us know if your property has been damaged (even slight damage). (max. 500 characters)
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