Today marks 46 years since the Deadliest Earthquake in Bulgarian History
Today marks the 46th anniversary of the most destructive earthquake in Bulgaria. 130 residents of Svishtov lost their lives. They will be honored at a city-wide commemoration at noon in the Danube city in front of the memorial plaques of the "33rd Svishtov Regiment" and on "Veleshana" Square.
On March 4, 1977, at 9:22 p.m., Romania was rocked by a powerful earthquake measuring 7.4 on the Richter scale, with its epicenter at Mount Vrancea in the Eastern Carpathians at a depth of 94 km. The tremor lasted 55 seconds, and the shock wave was felt in almost the entire Balkan region, including the Bulgarian city of Svishtov, which was most affected in our country
This is the strongest earthquake recorded in Bulgaria in the last 50 years (the previous major earthquake in Romania was on November 10, 1940 - it measured 7.4 on the Richter scale and is believed to have killed around 1,000 people, and about 4,000 were injured).
The quake killed 1,578 people in Romania (1,424 in Bucharest) and injured 11,321 (7,598 in Bucharest). In the capital, 32 buildings of high and medium height were destroyed, and in the country, a total of 32,900 buildings were severely damaged, including 760 enterprises. About 200,000 people are directly affected by the consequences.
In Bulgaria, the earthquake was felt throughout the country.
Svishtov was the most affected, where an eight-story building and the dormitory of the "Svilosa" chemical plant collapsed, killing more than 120 people and injuring over 140. During the rescue operation, 31 people were pulled out alive from under the debris. Serious material damage was caused to many buildings in the city.
The disaster was 7.6 on the Richter scale, and lasted less than a minute, but the picture after it was apocalyptic and 46 years later the painful memories are still vivid in the minds of Svishtov residents.
The next major earthquake in Romania was recorded on August 30, 1986, with a magnitude of 7.1, and its epicenter was again in Vrancea, 177 kilometers north of Bucharest. The quake at a depth of 131 kilometers killed at least 150 people and injured over 500. On May 30 and 31, 1990, a series of earthquakes were recorded again in Vrancea, the two strongest of which were of magnitude 6.9 and 6.4. They took the lives of eight people in Romania (there were three more victims in the Republic of Moldova and one in Bulgaria), and 296 were injured. This is the last deadly earthquake in Romania.
Statistics show that in the Vrancea seismic area earthquakes with a magnitude of 6 or greater occur approximately every 10 years, earthquakes with a magnitude of 7 every 33 years, and those with a magnitude greater than 7.5 every 80 years.
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