One week after a 5.5 magnitude earthquake hit Acıpayam, the western Turkish town is still being shaken by aftershocks. More than 1,000 aftershocks followed the first tremors and a 4.3-magnitude aftershock yesterday alerted authorities. Schools in the town located in the province of Denizli were shut down for the next two days after the powerful aftershock.
Residents of the town were warned not to go back into their residences if they were damaged in the March 20 earthquake. Charities set up tents for locals whose houses were damaged in the earthquake and food aid was being distributed to the affected population. No casualties were reported in last week's earthquake and aftershocks, but a number of buildings were destroyed in the strong tremors. Experts say aftershocks might continue for a few months and they can be as high as 5.4 magnitude.
Acıpayam is not located on a big fault line and earthquake experts believe that a slow-moving fault line may be to blame for last week's earthquake. Turkey is among the world's most seismically active countries as it is situated on a number of active fault lines. In the most recent earthquake-related disaster, more than 600 people died in October 2011 in the eastern province of Van after a 7.2 magnitude quake and powerful aftershocks. The most potentially devastating fault line in Turkey is the Northern Anatolia Fault (NAF), where the Anatolian and Eurasian plates meet.