Two Earthquakes Rattle Northern Israel in Under 24 Hours


Two earthquakes rattled northern Israel in the span of 24 hours, prompting calls from local council heads to improve municipal and national readiness before disaster strikes.

The Geological Survey reported that a magnitude 3.1 tremor shook the north on Wednesday morning, about 12 hours after a magnitude 3.5 earthquake was felt in the same area on Tuesday evening.

The Israel Police said its emergency center received dozens of calls from residents in the area, adding that no injuries or damage were reported.

The Geological Survey reported that the epicenter of the earthquakes was 15 kilometers (9 miles) northeast of Beit She’an.

These quakes make for four tremors in the span of less than a month: On Feb. 3, a magnitude 5.4 earthquake occurred in Cyprus and was also felt in Israel. Ten days prior, residents of Teveria, Tzfas, Yavniel, Haifa and the Krayot area in northern Israel reported feeling a 4.1 magnitude earthquake, the epicenter of which was 10 miles northeast of Beit She’an, south of the Kinneret.

“When this area is struck by a major earthquake – and unfortunately, history has shown it will happen – none of the decision-makers in Israel will be able to say they were surprised by the disaster that will befall us. The writing is on the wall,” Jordan Valley Regional Council Head Idan Greenbaum said.

Earthquakes make for short-lived headlines, he continued, “then everyone moves on as if nothing has happened. There’s no real strategy or plan to reinforce buildings and no plan on how to save lives when catastrophe hits. It’s time the Prime Minister wakes up.”

Chatzor Haglilit Local Council Head Shimon Suissa called on the government to allocate a budget for reinforcing buildings in the city.

“Four earthquakes in less than one month is beyond a warning sign. I call on the State of Israel to allocate budgets immediately to strengthen the old buildings. History proves that once a century there is a significant earthquake. The last one was about 100 years ago. Let’s wake up and prepare in time and soon before it is too late,” he said.

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