Myanmar recently experienced some earthquakes across the country, measuring from 3.0 to 5.0 Richter scale. There has been a growing concern about the seismic waves. It cannot be predicted when this natural disaster will happen. Why did the seismic events occur very often from 2106 to 2019? The relevant organizations have conducted earthquake drills and educative talks to prevent huge losses in the quakes. Many people have gained earthquake knowledge. The works such organizations are greatly appreciated. Capable persons need to contribute to developing Myanmar into a quake-resilient country.
Analysing the type of earthquakes
Earthquakes happened very frequently these days. Most of them centred along Rakhine Mountains in western Myanmar with the ranges from 4.0 to 5.0 magnitudes at a depth between 70 km and 200 km, along Sagaing fault, Shan hills (including southern, northern and eastern Shan state) with the ranges from 3.0 to 4.0 magnitude at a depth between 0 to 40 km (mostly common at 10 km). It has been considerable events of the subduction zone earthquakes which occurred when India Plate is thrust beneath Burma Plate.
Some significant earthquakes of these types happened with 4.7 magnitude at 93.5 km depth in the northernmost part of northwestern Myanmar on 26 August 2019, with 4.7 magnitude at 54.7 km depth in Thandwe on 18 August 2019, another one with 5.3 magnitude at 40.3 km depth almost at the same time on the same day, and with 4.8 magnitude at 98.9 km depth at northwest of Chauk Township on 6 August 2019. These three quakes occurred one after another in eight and 10 days intervals.
These subduction zone earthquakes happened very often. Earthquakes in YeU on 31 August 2019 and Mawlamyinegyun on 11 September 2019 were the types of back-arc seismicity related to subduction zone earthquakes.
When heavy India Plate thrusted beneath less heavy Burma Plate, a compression resulted in normal fault, lateral strike-slip fault and thrust fault, then occurred the basinin-version earthquakes.
Importance of effective preparedness measures
As the subduction occurred at 95 degree longitude of central Myanmar, the earthquake happened in YeU. In reviewing these five quakes, the shocks of India Plate and Burma Plate in short interval turned into deep earthquakes and shallow earthquakes.
A total of 63 earthquakes happened in the half of 2018. The figure has spotlighted subduction zones become active. However, no scientists could conclude that the frequent earthquakes are a sign of strong earthquake in the future or the results of active subduction zones. Therefore, it is important to take effective preparedness measures to minimize the effects of earthquakes and to mitigate the losses. (Translated by Aung Khin)