In an AFAD report prepared three years ago, Kahramanmaras was given special attention. AFAD’s 2020 Kahramanmarash Disaster Risk Reduction Plan named Pazardzhik, the epicenter of the February 6 earthquake, as an “active earthquake zone.” Search and rescue efforts are still ongoing in the Southeast Anatolia region, where two earthquakes of magnitude over 7.5 occurred in 24 hours. So, what other items are included in AFAD’s Kahramanmarash provincial disaster risk reduction plan for 2020? What are the highlights of the recent earthquake in the report? We are looking at the details of the report together.
Experts explain the psychological effect of an earthquake: “Keep children away from images of an earthquake”
Kahramanmarash and its environs are south of the collision boundary of the Anatolian and Arabian plates.
geologist prof. Dr. The disaster that Naji Göryur had previously warned about occurred on the morning of February 6 in a total of 11 provinces centered on Kahramanmaras. On the other hand, this catastrophe was even reflected in the reports of the Presidium for Combating Natural Disasters and Emergencies (AFAD) 3 years ago. Statements in a report prepared in 2020, “Because the region is in what can be considered a very long recession, the public is unaware of the possible danger of an earthquake” pointed to a disaster that occurred 3 years later. According to the report, Kahramanmarash is located south of the collision boundary between the Anatolian Plate and the Arabian Plate.
In the Provincial Disaster Risk Reduction Plan (IRAP) Preparation Guide, Kahramanmarash, which was selected as a pilot province, was first studied between May and September 2019 and a scenario was prepared. According to the 2020 IRAP report, all the possible disaster possibilities in Kahramanmaras were mentioned one by one. Among these possibilities, what was described under the name “earthquake” seemed to foreshadow the painful catastrophe being experienced today in three years. The location of Kahramanmarash and the surrounding area is given in the report as “south of the collision boundary between the Anatolian Plate and the Arabian Plate”. “The region is influenced by the left-handed strike-slip East Anatolian Fault and the Dead Sea Fault, which were formed as a result of this collision and occupy an important place in the tectonics of Turkey,” are among the details mentioned in the report. .
The East Anatolian Fault System (DAFS) is located between the northward moving “Arabian Plate” and the westward moving Anatolian Block. The fault line, stretching from Antakya to Armenia, has an average width of 30 kilometers and a length of 580 kilometers. Another noteworthy statement in the report is that the Gölbashi-Turkoğlu section is in a seismic rupture position that has not caused a major earthquake in over 500 years. On the other hand, the epicenter of the first earthquake with a magnitude of 7.7, Pazardzhik, is located in this area.
Elbistan is one of the areas most affected by natural disasters.
According to the AFAD report plan for 2020, Elbistan is the area most affected by all types of natural disasters in Kahramanmarash as of 2015. Elbistan, the epicenter of the second earthquake on February 6, has a 15.62% higher level of damage from natural disasters compared to the other 11 districts. According to the plan, at the end of 2016, in Hadjibek Mahallesi, Turkoglu district, to monitor seismic movements on faults in order to minimize possible earthquakes and damage in Kahramanmarash.
The report says there is a large 200-year accumulation of energy at the fault lines.
The report, which is titled “Kahramanmarash region and its environs, is in the zone of earthquakes of the first degree with high seismic activity in terms of its tectonic structure”, contains the following statements:
- The region is under the influence of the East Anatolian Fault and the Dead Sea Fault, which keep it alive. It is clear that these faults have accumulated energy for 200 years and there is a very high potential seismic hazard.
- The meeting of the East Anatolian fault and the Dead Sea fault south of Kahramanmarash and their bending into branches can form an epicentral region of possible earthquakes of large magnitude.
- This raises concerns that it will increase the risk and extent of damage. In addition, this concern is reinforced by the fact that most of the settlements are located on very weak soils.
The report includes the statement “Evacuation of facilities in hazardous areas is necessary.”
The report prepared by the Presidium of Disaster and Emergency Management in 2020 also has important details summarizing today’s disaster. According to the report, one of the highlights is the following:
- Due to the fact that the region is going through a period of stagnation, which can be considered very long, people are unaware of the possible danger of earthquakes. This situation further increases the size of the danger.
- For this reason, in order to minimize human casualties and material losses in case of a possible earthquake, it is necessary to conduct a detailed survey of the soil in residential areas and evacuate structures in hazardous zones (regions).
- In addition, seismic activity and the risk of earthquakes must be taken into account when choosing sites for the founding and development of newly created villages, towns and cities.
- Reinforced concrete and earthquake-resistant buildings with correct static calculations should be erected on solid foundations, away from active faults.
“Scenario of a magnitude 7.5 earthquake in Kahramanmaras” was used in the 2020 AFAD report.
The AFAD report shows that “a 7.5 magnitude earthquake scenario in Kahramanmaras” was used. In preparing the scenario, details such as the strongest earthquake that could have affected the city and the strongest earthquake in the past, the strongest earthquake that an active fault in the region could cause, and the ratio of the length of the fault to the magnitude were used. Under the scenario, 11 out of 11 districts are most at risk from earthquakes and liquefaction. In the report, details reminiscent of Kahramanmarash being close to an active fault zone, the ground conditions being suitable for liquefaction, and the water table being very high, also include an assessment that “in the event of a possible major earthquake, part of the city would be affected.”
Regarding Pazardzhik, the epicenter of the first quake, the 2020 report says: “In the event of a possible strong earthquake in the area where the Kartalka dam is located, the earthquake will affect almost the entire region.” The emphasis on the “active earthquake zone” for the Pazardzhik region was also mentioned in a report prepared three years ago. For Türkoğlu, who was heavily affected by the earthquake, in the event of a major earthquake, it is predicted that almost the entire region will be affected. On the other hand, it was pointed out that a filling complex producing hazardous substances was located in the region.
The goal of building reinforcement works was set for 2030.
According to the 2020 report, AFAD is adding its earthquake-related goals and objectives to the report. For example, in order to “prioritize buildings in the Pazardzhik, Bagdynysagir, Cengiz Topel, Mehmet Emin Arikoglu, Menderes, Narli, Shehit Nurettin Ademoglu neighborhoods, taking into account their seismic resistance, giving them priority based on inventory and risk.” analytical research, as well as the implementation of work to strengthen and transform. Although the respective municipality of Pazardzhik was given responsibility, the target implementation period was defined as the range of 2020-2030.
The goal of implementing works to strengthen and transform the Turkoglu and Dulkadiroglu districts is also timed to 2030. According to a report prepared for the purpose of “classifying buildings according to risk assessment and creating building identification cards by municipalities according to hazard class according to building stock inventory”, the deadline was set as 2021.
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