A seismic series has caused more than 2,000 earthquakes between April and Monday morning with epicentres in the southern area of the Alborán Sea. The tremors were felt in Melilla and various points in the provinces of Granada, Málaga and Almería.
To be precise, the Earth vibrated 2,139 times. Not all tremors were equally severe and above all of moderate intensity. Last Saturday, however, the series reached a new maximum with an earthquake measuring 5.1 on the Richter magnitude scale. The epicentre was just off the coast of Morocco near Al Hoceima.
More than ten earthquakes were detected until late in the afternoon on Saturday. The first and largest was initially measured at 4.9 degrees on the Richter scale, but was later upgraded to 5.1 . On Sunday, the largest of the series of that day’s quakes reached a magnitude of 3.2, according to data on the National Geographic Institute (IGN) website. Another 25 followed until 12 noon on Monday morning.
National Seismic Network sources explained many of the quakes are smaller aftershocks of Saturday’s larger quake. As a result, these aftershocks could continue for up to a month or more. They all take place in this fault zone, which will remain active for a longer period of time.
Slightly lower in strength than Saturday’s quake, but still quite intense, were shocks that occurred on June 19 of 4.7 degrees and on July 30 of 4.5 degrees.
111 earthquakes felt by the population
Of the more than 2,000 recorded tremors since April when the series became active, 104 were of magnitude equal to or greater than 3 degrees; and 16 of 4 degrees. The population felt 111 of those earthquakes, especially in the Spanish enclave of Melilla on the Moroccan north coast. Melilla is about 60 kilometres from the area where the epicentres are usually located. Despite this, people in the the cities of Málaga, Almería and Granada also felt the tremors. And that doesn’t include the tremors since December that belong to a different seismic series.
It keeps rumbling
Experts expect more earthquakes of varying intensity in the southern part of the Alborán Sea. In 2016, an earthquake recorded a magnitude of 6.3 on the Richter scale. The origin of this series lies in the sea and far from civilization.