Earthquake hit eastern Ethiopia, vibrations felt in Dire Dawa

Earthquake Ethiopia-Somalia border

Moderate earth quake hit eastern Ethiopia Tuesday after mid-night. The magnitude of the earth quake was 4.6 Richter scale, according to the reports from the United States Geological Survey (USGS).

According to, there are no volcanoes in the immediate vicinity, thus the earthquake is ‘most likely a tectonic earthquake’ in the East Africa rift zone.’ A number of earthquakes have occurred in this region previously in 1930, 1951, 1961 and 1980.

The earthquake took place at 2:24 am Ethiopian time. The epicenter of the earthquake is located in eastern Ethiopia close to North Somalia border. About 138 km (85 miles) distance from Dire Dawa, the second largest city of Ethiopia.

A female friend of mine in Dire Dawa city who had been awake at the time told me in the morning that she felt a vibration, big enough to frighten her ‘around 3 am’, thus she stayed awake for several hours contemplating what to do if it happens again – an account I considered a hallucination until I saw the report from USGS a few hours ago. Though I am currently in the same city, just a few hundred meters away from her and awake at that time, I didn’t notice anything. Perhaps, our different experience may be attributed to the fact that she lives at the top of a one story building and, at the time, sitting in the living room, with several decoration items attached to the wall which would be responsive to vibrations. A few more individuals corroborated the vibrations, though I am unable to inquire them in detail(their setting, its strength, etc.) at this time – which is mid-night.

Read below the report from the United States Geological Survey (USGS).


Magnitude 4.6 – ETHIOPIA

2011 August 02 23:24:33 UTC

Earthquake Details

This event has been reviewed by a seismologist.




· Tuesday, August 02, 2011 at 23:24:33 UTC

· Wednesday, August 03, 2011 at 02:24:33 AM at epicenter

· Time of Earthquake in other Time Zones


9.870°N, 43.102°E


15 km (9.3 miles)




110 km (68 miles) WNW of Hargeysa, Somalia
138 km (85 miles) ENE of Dire Dawa, Ethiopia
487 km (302 miles) ENE of ADDIS ABABA, Ethiopia
1416 km (879 miles) NNE of NAIROBI, Kenya

Location Uncertainty

horizontal +/- 25.6 km (15.9 miles); depth +/- 4.5 km (2.8 miles)


NST= 37, Nph= 37, Dmin=497.6 km, Rmss=1.21 sec, Gp=133°,
M-type=body wave magnitude (Mb), Version=4


· Magnitude: USGS NEIC (WDCS-D)
Location: USGS NEIC (WDCS-D)

Event ID



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Daniel Berhane

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