One of the first natural disasters of this year hit Turkey on Monday morning. Nearly 5000 deaths have been reported till now. Numberless people are being pulled out of the rubble, and the rescuing teams are working around the clock to save as many lives as possible.
This natural disaster, without a doubt, is one of the biggest of the entire century. When Turkey is suffering from extreme cold, it has been reported that rescuing the survivors and providing food to the needy is more difficult. The consecutive earthquakes have now become a concern for the whole world. The World Health Organisation and United Nations have expressed great concerns regarding Turkey’s earthquake-prone areas. Not only that, now the main concern should be, what has the future stored for us?
Turkey Earthquake, An Overview
The 7.8 Richter scale earthquake that hit Turkey and damaged its ancient architecture has shaken the world, scared it and left people concerned and worried. Any natural disaster cannot just damage the country in focus. It does a lot more than that. Now the prime concern is, will something like this happen again? Will we ever be capable of predicting earthquakes?
The fact is, maybe. But that is a far-fetched reality. For us, now, it is nothing but a dream. Right now, earthquakes are unpredictable. It is what seems the scariest of all.
The first earthquake hitting the Turkey and Syria border was 7.8 on the Richter scale. It is considered the most dangerous natural disaster of the century. Around 5000 deaths have been reported, thousands of people became homeless overnight, and more than 15000 people are reportedly severely injured.
While Turkey has been suffering, the condition of Syria is not so impressive either. The Turkey and Syrian border is full of Syrian refugees. They have been dependent on humanitarian help since the bloody civil war. Moreover, the Syrian people have been dealing with the worst Cholera outrage. Most people are children and women. With the massive earthquake hitting, Syria is in for a whole new crisis as well. In Syria, more than 1400 people died.
Areas Affected By The Earthquake
The first earthquake that hit Turkey on Monday morning was a 7.8-magnitude quake. Its epicentre was Turkey’s Gaziantep province, spreading up to twenty-three kilometres. Its depth was 24.1 kilometres. It has also hit the east of Nurdagi.
However, this was not it. Another shockwave shook Turkey nine hours after the first quake. The aftershock spread up to ninety-five kilometres north of the first epicentre. Now, the magnitude was 7.5. According to the report, the shock was felt by the neighbouring countries of Turkey. Lebanon and Cyprus are two of the countries that felt the aftershock waves.
Even though the third earthquake was of 5.3 magnitudes, it hit Turkey and Syria majorly. The Gaziantep castle is ruined, along with the buildings and houses.
An Overview of The Damage
The recent photos emerging on the Internet are very disturbing. As the day broke, the country that stood tall was now under rubble. Some buildings are flattened, and metal rods and house materials are scattered everywhere. The images of toppled cars and the building falling down have disturbed the people watching the news. The winter storm has made the situation even worse. According to a CNN meteorologist, hundreds of thousands of people have been affected by this. The cold and rainy weather have disrupted livelihood, food supply, and care for children and families.
The Condition of Syria
The earthquake has also affected various parts of Syria. As mentioned earlier, more than 1400 people have been reported dead. According to SANA, a Syrian state news agency, seven hundred and eleven people died around the Syrian Government controlled areas. Aleppo, Tartus, Hama, and Latakia are the most affected parts of Syria.
The Syrian civil Defense group has also reported seven hundred and forty deaths in the non-government-controlled areas. With Turkey experiencing extremely cold weather, sending humanitarian help has become the most challenging thing to do.
Concerns for the aftermath
The United Nations has said that this earthquake is the most disastrous earthquake that hit the country after eighty years. The last earthquake that happened in Turkey was in 1939, killing thirty thousand people. The World Health Organisation has said, “We are especially concerned about areas of Turkey and Syria from which we have no information after the deadly earthquake.”
While the death toll is rising, various countries have offered their help. The United Nations have already activated all its resources and rescue operations to save as many survivors as possible. The Indian Prime Minister, Narendra Modi, has offered all kinds of help to rescue the affected people. The Indian aviation regulator has met with the Indian carriers to send flights to Turkey for cargo movements. Not only that, The Central Government of India has already activated the NDFR team for the rescue operation. It left for Turkey on Tuesday with two Indian Air Force C-17 aircraft from Ghaziabad’s Hindon air base.
When smashed bodies are discovered every minute from beneath the rubble, the whole world is mourning and shocked to see this natural disaster. But, also, they are fearful, thinking, what if the same thing happened again to humanity?
Why Is The Result So Drastic?
Turkey has always been an earthquake-prone country. Turkey, being situated on the Anatolian tectonic plate, which is located between the African and Eurasian plates, is one of the reasons why Turkey is so prone to these massive earthquakes.
Turkey is also one of the countries hit by several earthquakes yearly. But all of them were small. Despite this, the Turkish Government never made much efforts to build earthquake-sustainable homes. Some also believe that Tayyip Erdogan, the Turkish President, has a long-lasting conflict with the Syrian Government. Also, he never had a positive relationship with the people living in the hilly area of the country.
Consequently, development has been almost zero in these places. Some reports also say that the Turkish have never been mentally prepared for experiencing this kind of natural disaster. That is also one of the reasons why people are facing this day.
Karl Lang, an assistant professor of Georgia Tech University’s School, has stated that “it is a very large fault zone, but this a larger earthquake than they have experienced any time in recent memory.”
Turkey, which has always been one of the favourite tourist destinations, has been hit by three massive earthquakes, all a hundred times stronger than one another. It is undoubtedly one of the biggest natural disasters. While the world is scared and mourning, we must consider how these types of disasters could be avoided in the future.
Our Prayers For Turkey – Syria