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Skyscrapers main concern: Powerful quakes may wreak havoc in Delhi-NCR

Skyscrapers main concern: Powerful quakes may wreak havoc in Delhi-NCR

New Delhi: The National Capital region was hit by an earthquake on Tuesday afternoon. The tremors were felt in different areas of the national capital region including New Delhi and Noida.

The 6.3 magnitude earthquake struck north-west of Lahore on Tuesday afternoon. The tremors, which lasted a few seconds, were felt at around 4:35 pm in Delhi. The quake forced people living in Noida, Greater Noida, Gurugram and Ghaziabad to come out from their residential and commercial high-rises. However, no causality or major loss was reported in Delhi and the National Capital Region (NCR). Delhi and its adjoining areas fall in the very sensitive Seismic Zone 4.

According to experts, tremors are caused due to Eurasian and Indian tectonic plates. The geological activity born out of this collision, also responsible for the birth of the Himalayan mountain range, is the cause of unstable seismicity in the region. But the concern remains for the skyscrapers in unplanned urbanisation which can lead to higher levels of destruction during powerful earthquakes. Increased seismic activity at frequent intervals has been posing a threat to the region.

Geologically, Delhi and its suburbs including Ghaziabad and Noida together form a part of the Indo-Gangetic alluvium, which is filled with silt, sand, and loam. Disaster management experts said that upward areas along Yamuna and Hindon rivers are more vulnerable in case of an earthquake. Experts said that there are more than 50 lakh buildings in Delhi-NCR. Most of them do not have proper safety norms. Buildings close to the rivers are more vulnerable to earthquakes. Close to National Capital is Gurugram, which has many highrises prone to quakes.

Tremor strikes city

As soon as the earthquake hit the city, the people started informing other known persons through phone calls. People also used social media to share their experience during the tremor. "Just experienced #earthquake in Delhi CP. I sit in 9 floor and for some seconds I thought I experienced dizziness until the second colleague said she experienced it too. #delhiearthquake," reads one of the tweets related to the earthquake. Another Twitterati tweeted that "Earthquake guys! Quite long. #DelhiEarthquake".

"Experienced an earthquake after 15 years. Failed to understand if I was dizzy or was the building actually moving #earthquake#earthquakeindelhi#delhiearthquake," another tweet reads.

Anup Verma

Anup Verma

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