(ETH) – A 3.2 magnitude shook southern Israel on Thursday evening centered in an area 43 kilometers southeast of Dimona. This is the second earthquake in Israel this week. On Wednesday, a 4.2 magnitude earthquake was felt in southern Israel.
According to statistics and seismic history, the region should experience a major quake every 80-100 years. The last major quake was on July 11, 1927, and registered 6.2 on the Richter Scale killing 500 people.
Another major earthquake is therefore now due. A study led by researchers from Tel Aviv University carried out under the auspices of the International Continental Scientific Drilling Program (ICDP) and published in the Science Advances journal last year indicated that Israel may face a destructive earthquake in the coming years.
A 2016 report by the Knesset Foreign Affairs and Defense Committee’s Home-Front Readiness Subcommittee stated that in the case of a 7.5 magnitude earthquake, an estimated 7,000 people would be killed, another 8,600 injured and 377,000 left homeless. In addition, such a quake could cause up to $55 billion in damages.
As terrifying as earthquakes can be, there may be a silver lining to an increase in regional seismic activity. In a 2007 article in the J-Post, Dr. Shmuel Marco, Head of the School of the Environment and Earth Sciences at Tel Aviv University, noted that prophets became active a certain number of years after major earthquakes. Major earthquakes were recorded in the Jordan Valley in the years 31 BCE, 363 CE, 749 CE and 1033 CE. READ MORE