Dead Sea Earthquake Of 11 February 2004, ML 5.2: Post Earthquake Damage Assessment

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Year of Publication: 
Radwan El-Kelani
Earth Sciences and Seismic Engineering Center (ESSEC), An-Najah National University, P.O. Box 707, Nablus, Palestine
Jalal Nimer ِِAl Dabbeek
Earth Sciences and Seismic Engineering Center (ESSEC), An-Najah National University, P.O. Box 707, Nablus, Palestine
Preferred Abstract (Original): 

The 11 February 2004 earthquake (ML 5.2) with an epicenter in the northeastern part of the Dead Sea basin (at latitude 31.679 N, longitudes 35.585 E with a focal depth of 17 km) caused slight damage to several regions in the West Bank, Palestine. The earthquake was felt in the Palestinian cities: Jericho, Hebron, Nablus, Ramallah, Bethlehem and Jerusalem but no life loss was reported. Moreover, few smaller earthquakes followed the Earthquake of 11 February 2004 at different locations and times of the same year 2004: 7 July ML 4.8 ( Lat 31.97 Long 35.55), 20 July ML 3.6 (32.46, 35.25), 2 December ML 2.8 (32.25, 35.37). They mainly felt in the northern part of West Bank especially in Nablus City, although they are not closed to Nablus but because of some site effects factors (geological formations, structures etc.). Based on postearthquake investigations, many reinforced concrete buildings in Palestine suffered slight nonstructural damages (damage grade 1 according to European Macro seismic scale 1998 “EMS- 1998”), such as hair-line cracks in very few walls, specially over frame members or in walls at the base and fine cracks in partition walls. Three old schools suffered moderate structural damages and substantial non-structural damages (damage grade 3). The Earthquake affected also many old masonry buildings in the Palestinian old cities (Jerusalem, Nablus, Hebron, Bethlehem, ….etc), in Nablus city few historical buildings have been affected with damages between grade 2 to grade 4. The damages that had been occurred had usually been at zone of pre-existing weakness. In the light of the post-earthquake investigations the effected masonry and old masonry buildings suffered with many kinds of damages, such as: crack patterns in masonry pillars, slippage between the block, corner detachment, a flat vault’s collapse, detachment between few perpendicular walls (in a corner) and crushing in masonry pillars.

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