No damages or casualties have been reported.
Rabat – An earthquake with a magnitude of 3.4 degrees on the Richter scale hit the province of Taounate, in northeastern Morocco’s Rif Mountains, shortly after the clock struck midnight on Sunday morning, reports the National Institute of Geophysics (ING).
The epicenter of the tremor lies in the town of Loulja, and the quake hit at just after 12:28 a.m. on July 5, according to an ING seismic alert. The tremors were nine kilometers deep and had a latitude of 34.328 North and a longitude of 4.917 West.
Tremors of a 3.4 magnitude are felt but seldom cause severe damage. Earthquakes of magnitudes of 2.5 or less are usually not felt, while those with magnitudes of 6.1 or greater can cause significant damage in populated areas.
No damages or casualties in Taounate have been reported.
Sunday’s earthquake is the second to hit Taounate in less than a week. The ING recorded a 4.9-magnitude earthquake in the same province at 7 a.m. on June 30, with its epicenter in the rural town of Ouled Daoud.
On March 15, Driouch, also in northeastern Morocco, experienced a 2.0-magnitude earthquake.
The region has experienced several earthquakes in the past, with the most devastating striking Al Hoceima in 2004. The 6.3-magnitude tremors killed more than 600 people, injured 926, and left 15,000 homeless.
Other quakes have hit the Driouch province in December 2019 (4.0 degrees) and Nador in January 2016 (5.2 degrees).
Central Morocco experiences frequent earthquakes. The Midlet province, in particular, recorded multiple earthquakes at the end of 2019 and the beginning of 2020, ranging between 4.2 and 5.3 degrees.
In November 2019, the region felt four earthquakes in less than two weeks, the largest being of a 5.3 magnitude on November 17, which caused significant damage.
The deadliest earthquake in Morocco’s history hit the southern city of Agadir in 1960. With a magnitude of 5.8 degrees, the tremor killed more than 15,000 people, injured 12,000, and left 35,000 homeless.