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Earthquake in Pakistan 2005

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Figure 3 illustrates the situation of the city before and after the event. The initial death toll, according to media reports, was 30,000 people killed only in Kashmir with42, 397 people injured and 200 army soldiers killed on duty. Completely destroyed areas included the city of Muzaffarabad and Balakot, which turned into a plain piece of land after the quake. The government’ s official death toll is 75,000 whereas, USGS states 86,000 people’ s death with 69,000 injured including extensive damage in northern Pakistan. Various other Northern areas of the state were badly affected such as Gilgit, Baltistan, Swat and Khyber province of Pakistan.

Major cities such as Rawalpindi, Islamabad were also affected. A 10- story residential building in Islamabad, named Margalla Towers collapsed completely, killing almost all of the occupants. The death toll grew significantly after the actual event due to harsh weather and difficulties in the support services. Severity of the destruction of earthquake is not completely attributed to the severe up thrust in the land plates but poor construction also played a major role in spreading the destruction.

figure 4 and figure 5 show an example of poor construction in the capital city of the country. The severe shaking was not the limit of this massive natural disaster but aftershocks, landslides and rock falls also rocked the devastated areas a number of times for several weeks. Land sliding was the main feature of this event and earthquake triggered a band of landslidings along the fault rupture trace. These landslidings of both shallow and deep seated affected the area. They destroyed the roads and structures present at slope regions.

landslides even managed to change the course of the river. Rock falls including both large and small destructed roadways, structures and communities. According to an average 4 million people were left homeless. (USGS, 2011) In widespread collapses of schools, 19,000 children were killed. Affecting 500,000 families and destroying almost 17,000 of school buildings and hospitals, the earthquake left the living victims to face the upcoming harsh winter without any shelter.

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