2023 Turkey-Syria Earthquakes Story Map

On February 6, 2023, Southern Turkey and Northern Syria were struck by earthquakes nearing magnitudes of 8.0 resulting in mass-scale destruction of cities near the epicenter of the quakes. This ultimately left millions of people displaced and well over 55,000 deaths. Consequently, the world turned their attention to Turkey and Syria to provide aid to impacted citizens. The CartoVista team has collected data on the disaster to provide awareness and insights into the earthquakes that impact Turkey. 

This Story Map will visually review the history of earthquakes in Turkey, the Turkey-Syria earthquakes during February, the damages caused by the quakes as well as live updates of earthquakes in Turkey

History of Earthquakes in Turkey

The first slide of the story map visualizes earthquakes across Turkey from the 1900s to 2022 as clusters based on their magnitudes
Historically, Turkey has been victim to many Earthquakes because of how close the country is to the earth’s tectonic plate boundaries. Devastation caused by earthquakes are quantified by the magnitude of the earthquake. The following map highlights the magnitude of Earthquakes across the country from the early 1900s to present day with many earthquakes touching magnitudes closer to 7.0
On the map, the blue gradient on the provinces of Turkey indicate population count. The red dashed-lines represent the fault lines that intersect Turkey. Across the country, tri-colored clusters group the count of earthquakes within a region of the country. Each of the 3 colors that comprise a cluster indicate the percentage of earthquakes with magnitudes ranging from 5.0 to 7.0+. By hovering over each point, you will see the location of the earthquakes, the number of earthquakes that took place, and the number of earthquakes by magnitude.

February 2023 Turkey-Syria Earthquakes 

High magnitude earthquakes tend to occur along or near the tectonic fault lines on the surface of the Earth. During the first week of February, Turkey was victim to 13 earthquakes with magnitudes greater than 6 in the Southern regions of the country where the country shares a border with Syria. Of these 13, 2 of the Earthquakes had a magnitude nearing 8.0 with destructive effects on the areas near by. These earthquakes caused ruptures to the tectonic plate boundaries. Every earthquake has an associated shaking perception and damage potential associated with it. This score classifies regions around the earthquake to provide an idea of the impact of the earthquake. 

The following map shows the earthquakes Southern Turkey encountered during February with respect to their magnitudes, and the ruptures induced from these earthquakes on the earth’s fault lines. Additionally, this map classifies Turkey and Syria by the shake intensity of the earthquake (magnitude of 8) in the city of Ekinozu

Damage Statistics by Major Cities in Turkey

Earthquakes are most lethal in areas where buildings are present. Most buildings, especially in Turkey, are not built to withstand the tremors caused by quakes. Given a high enough magnitude, buildings can completely collapse and destroy everything in the surroundings. The recent Earthquakes demolished buildings across many cities and consequently displaced a large proportion of impacted citizens.

The following map displays 4 cities that were destroyed by the recent earthquakes based on the number of buildings damaged and citizens displaced

Over 3000 buildings were destroyed in Marash with approximately 150,000 people impacted.

Effects of the Earthquakes on Antakya, Turkey

Many Turkish cities were destroyed from the  recent earthquakes in February. As a response, authorities alongside international aid mobilized to create camps and barriers across the city to provide shelter for displaced citizens. 

The following map of Antakya is a classification of satellite imagery that depicts the aftermath of the earthquake, and the response made by authoritative figures to help impacted citizens. Pan across the map to see the damages throughout the city.

Roads and Buildings make up a majority of the city’s structure, and the damages caused to them are classified on a scale ranging from no visible damage to completely destroyed. Based on the map, it seems that the central regions of the city are heavily destroyed

Live-Time Map of Earthquakes in Turkey

The following map visualizes earthquakes as they happen daily across Turkey as of February 2023 using the USGS Earthquake Data API. Clusters are created for regions where earthquakes happen in large volume. Check daily after 9:00 a.m. EST for updates.

Check out our data sources to know more about Earthquake data: USGS, Wikipedia, and Kaggle.

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