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October 29, 2020
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4.7-magnitude earthquake jolts Romania



A 4.7-magnitude earthquake occurred on Tuesday evening in the Vrancea area, eastern Romania, at 19:33 hours.
The earthquake originated 136 km deep, according to the National Earth Physics Institute (INFP) and the Euro-Mediterranean Seismologic Centre, 138 km north of Bucharest.
Three nights previously, two 3-magnitude earthquakes occurred in the same area.
Nevertheless, according to INFP, the earthquakes occurred in Galati area (eastern Romania) in the period September 23 – October 15 are exclusively of tectonic nature, the phenomena being unusual for this region through their amplitude.
According to the studies carried out by the teams of seismologists in the assessed period, the earthquakes occurred were not caused by other factors such as floods or oil exploitations.
“The seismic chain is unusual for Galati area through its amplitude (magnitude and duration) if we report it to the available data (starting with the 20th century). We do not exclude the occurrence in the historical past of some similar sequences in the area, unidentified because of the lack of seismic recording stations,” the INFP report reads.
According to the cited source, the sequence of the high number of earthquakes in Galati area is not unique, being encountered in other areas of the globe, such as Western Bohemia, but also in Romania (Sinaia area, central-southern Romania).
“In Romania, though, according to the instrumental data, the chain of Galati is significantly larger, both as duration and as number of occurrences, compared with the similar phenomena of other areas. In many other cases of seismic chains sound effects of the type of those registered in Izvoarele village were signaled (boom earthquakes),” the conclusion of the seismologists show.
The most recent data reveal that at present the seismic activity in Galati area has declined significantly, the occurrence frequency and the magnitudes having decreased since October 11, 2013.
The positioning of the earthquakes in the assessed area show a NE-SW alignment along a system of active shifts in the perimeter at focal depths 95 percent situated in the 1-7 km interval.
On the other hand, INFP points out that, “taking into account the big pressure on behalf of the media about a possible influence of the oil exploitations in various geographic areas of the country, we propose the inclusion in the procedure of the exploitation/extraction approval of the seismic monitoring in the area in question over the entire period these processes are carried out.”
According to INFP, over 250 earthquakes occurred in Galati area in the mentioned period, with 19 episodes with the magnitude over 3 degrees on Richter scale.
Regarding the earthquakes in Romania, PAID Managing Director Nicoleta Radu-Neacsu said in the International Forum on Catastrophic Risks, on Tuesday, October 15, that our country is the country most exposed to earthquakes of the European Union and the maximum estimated damage stands at 4.4 billion euros.

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