Oman


Balochistan earthquake jolts parts of northern Oman


Pakistani pedestrians and office workers leave an office building after an earthquake in Karachi on September 24, 2013. Photo - AFP/Rizwan Tabassum

Muscat: Tremors of an earthquake measuring 7.8, which struck southwest Pakistan, were also felt in the Sultanate, residents told Times of Oman.

According to US Geological Survey, the quake's epicenter was 69 km north-northeast of Arawan, in Pakistan's western Balochistan province.

Muscat jolted
According to the seismological center in Muscat, the tremors were felt at around 3:29pm (Oman time) in different parts of northern Oman, according to reports. "The epicenter was 801km NE of Muscat, Oman," Dr. Essa Al Hussein, Director of the Seismological Center of Sultan Qaboos University, told Al Shabiba newspaper.

Residents of Muscat were quick to inform Times of Oman through its Facebook page about their initial reactions to the natural calamity.

"I felt a quake at around 3.30pm in Al Khuwair in my apartment. I was shaking in my chair," Andreke Moedt posted a comment on Times of Oman's Facebook page.

Other people also shared their experiences.

"I felt it in Al Khuwair. Initially I thought someone was rocking my chair gently. But when it was more than a rocking motion the second time, the entire building evacuated quickly," Narayanan Raju wrote on the Times' Facebook page.

However, some residents of Muscat and Sohar said they did not feel any tremors.

Quake's Origin
, the earthquake hit a remote area of the sparsely populated Balochistan region at a depth of just 15km. However, shocks were felt in neighboring Iran, India, Afghanistan, Oman, and the UAE. An 'orange' earthquake alert was issued in the wake of the natural disaster. Pakistan's Geo TV said the earthquake, which struck at 4:29 pm local time, lasted for about two minutes.

Pakistan's English-language daily The Express Tribune reported houses have been damaged across Awaran district in Balochistan province. An unspecified number of people were injured and escorted to nearby hospitals. Pakistani local media said the coastline is more likely to be affected.

Meanwhile, Reuters reported that a strong earthquake had struck remote western Pakistan on Tuesday and was also felt in the Indian capital of New Delhi where buildings shook. No damages were reported.

It may be recalled that aftershocks of 7.8 magnitude earthquake that struck Iran near the border with Pakistan were felt in northern parts of Oman on April 16.

Another earthquake of 6.3-magnitude struck near Khasab in Oman's northern enclave of Musandam on May 11 this year.

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