Saturday 11 August 2018

Magnitude 5.1 Earthquake in central Albania.

The United States Geological Survey recorded a Magnitude 5.1 Earthquake at a depth of about 10.0 km, roughly 10 km to the east of the town of Burrel in Albania, slightly before 5.40 pm local time (slightly before 3.40 pm GMT) on Saturday 11 August 2018. There are no reports of any damage or injuries associated with this event, but people have reported feeling the quake across much of Albania, as well as in the neighbouring states of Macedonia, Montenegro, Kosovo, Serbia and Bulgaria.

The approximate location of the 11 August 2018 Albania Earthquake. USGS.

The coastal region of Albania, and the other states of the western Balkan Peninsula, forms the eastern margin of the Adriatic Plate, a piece of the African Plate that has broken away and is now wedged into the southern part of the Eurasian Plate. This is being squeezed by the impact of Africa into Europe from the south, which is pushing western Italy, which sits on the Eurasian Plate, to the east, and Greece and Turkey, which sit on the Aegean and Anatolian Plates, to the west. This squeezing leads to uplift around the margins of the Adriatic Plate, in the Apennine Mountains of central Italy and the mountain ranges of the west Balkan Peninsula.

Outline map showing the approximate positions of the Eurasian (EU), Adriatic (AD) and African (AF) Plates. Di Bucci & Mazzuli (2003).

Witness accounts of Earthquakes can help geologists to understand these events, and the structures that cause them. The international non-profit organisation Earthquake Report is interested in hearing from people who may have felt this event; if you felt this quake then you can report it to Earthquake Report here.

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