Natural disasters know no bounds and take no breaks, and this new year can only attest to that. Twenty-thousand people found themselves homeless in Tajikistan as a moderate earthquake destroyed their mud homes. Russia’s RIA Novosti reports that the homeless reside in Rog and Gishkon villages, part of the Vanj district.
RIA Novosti also reports that “A hospital, two schools, a recreation center and a prosecutor’s office” were leveled, among the 1,050 mud homes.
According to the U.S. Geological Survey, the quake was measured at magnitude 5.3 on the Richter scale. According to the Richter scale, an earthquake of such magnitude can “cause major damage to poorly constructed buildings over small regions. At most slight damage to well-designed buildings.” Since many of the dwellings in the area were made of mud, they were easily destroyed.
The quake hit at 7:15 a.m. local time. The USGS reports that the quake was centered “50 miles north of Korough, Tajikistan, and was about 27.7 miles below the Earth’s surface.”