The most active onshore fault systems are the 674 kilometres (419 mi) Bucaramanga-Santa Marta Fault with earthquakes frequently occurring at the Bucaramanga Nest around Aratoca, Santander, the 697.4 kilometres (433.3 mi) Romeral Fault System in the Central Ranges (Popayán 1983 and Armenia 1999) and the 921.4 kilometres (572.5 mi) long Eastern Frontal Fault System in the Eastern Ranges. [34] [17] At that time the International Atomic Energy Agency's assistant director general Morris Rosen said of the situation "... you would never build a plant in that area, that's for sure, with what's known now. Approximately two hundred aftershocks were recorded each day for the first several days of the expedition and at the end of the recording period in February the equipment was still picking up around 100 shocks per day. Their injuries were minor, but one person did suffer a broken arm. At 11.41 am on December 7th 1988 an earthquake measuring 6.9 on the Richter Scale struck the Soviet Republic of Armenia. In all, 111 countries, 7 international organizations, and 53 national chapters of the Red Cross provided help to Armenia. Beginning with late 1987 the Caucasus region was experiencing a surge in political turmoil with large and near constant demonstrations being held in the capital of Yerevanbeginning in February 1988. Beginning with late 1987 the Caucasus region was experiencing a surge in political turmoil with large and near constant demonstrations being held in the capital of Yerevan beginning in February 1988. In an address on the 32nd anniversary of the 1988 earthquake, the President calls for national accord and unity. An engineer with the team stated that the regulations for the area mandated that buildings be required to stand up against events measuring seven or eight on the twelve degree Medvedev–Sponheuer–Karnik scale. One hundred and thirteen countries sent substantial amounts of humanitarian aid to the Soviet Union in the form of rescue equipment, search teams and medical supplies. This is a massive undertaking, and foreign involvement is both a necessary and a complicating factor. The Soviets and an American group of architects each devised separate outlines for rebuilding the town of Spitak. Better epidemiological knowledge of the causes of death and the type of injuries and illnesses caused by earthquakes is … The Soviets had modified their construction style to accommodate the known seismic risk in the area, but they acknowledged to the team that many of the buildings were not built to withstand an earthquake of that magnitude. [31], Seventy-eight people were killed while on a relief mission to Leninakan when a Soviet Ilyushin Il-76 crashed on approach to the airport there. The 1988 Armenian earthquake, also known as the Spitak earthquake (Armenian: Սպիտակի երկրաշարժ, Spitaki yerkrasharj), occurred on December 7 at 11:41 local time with a surface wave magnitude of 6.8 and a maximum MSK intensity of X (Devastating). December 7, 1988, 11:41 - Richter magnitude 6.9 December 7, 1988, 11:45 – Richter magnitude 5.8. This year we commemorate our thousands of compatriots, […] The earthquake measured 6.8 on the surface wave magnitude scale and had a maximum perceived intensity… “In the Armenian Republic, thousands of people have died,” Soviet Foreign Minister Eduard A. Shevardnadze said at a news conference on Dec. 8, 1988. As of July 1989 about $500 million in donations had been delivered to the Armenians from 113 countries. Editor’s note: Aleksandr Lebed was a legendary Russian soldier and general who at one point in the 1990s looked like a shoe-in to unseat Yeltsin. ( Log Out /  Going westward the fault split into two branches, a north-dipping reverse fault (north branch) and a right slip fault (south branch), but neither produced surface rupture. The total number of volunteer rescue personnel in Leninakan totalled 2,000, with teams from Austria, Switzerland, the United States and Yugoslavia. Up to 45,000 people have died and a further 500,000 are homeless after the devastating earthquake which ripped through Armenia, official figures revealed today. The crash was blamed on the pilots' failure to properly adjust the altimeter following a miscommunication with the air traffic controllers.[33]. The fourth earthquake would be the worst, prompting a global effort for relief that remained unprecedented in the history of the former Soviet Union. Along the western segments the fault split into two branches with one to the southwest and the other to the northwest [30] Nikolai Ryzhkov, the then Chairman of the Council of Ministers, was awarded the National Hero of Armenia for his work in rebuilding the city following the earthquake. Other officials decided that the town would be relocated several kilometers to the southwest. According to the book, Armenia in Crisis: The 1988 Earthquake, the man answered: “What do my hands matter, everything I cherish is under there – my son, my daughter, my wife and my mother.” For those fortunate enough to be pulled from the rubble, kidney failure was an immediate concern. The mainshock produced surface rupture and propagated to the west with a separate strike-slip sub-event occurring two seconds later that propagated to the southeast. The initial portion of work included nearly a full week setting up the seismometers and optimizing their operation and, with that complete, two full weeks of continuous operation was then completed with twenty six seismometers covering an area over 1,500 km2. The earthquake’s effects were assessed at ten on that seismic scale. Chrysler chairman Lee Iacocca arranged for a fund drive, and in Chicago (one of five major Armenian population centers in the US) the community raised $800,000 and donated 9,000 kilograms (20,000 lb) of supplies. A monument, Armenian Earthquake, expressing the appreciation of the Armenian people for assistance from the U.S. was erected in Washington D.C. in 1990. Following an invitation by the Soviets for a critique of their plan, the American’s proposal was ultimately accepted as the way forward. The shocks at the southeastern segment indicated right-lateral strike-slipmovement along a nearly vertical fault, and may have been related to the Alavar fault. 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