AN earthquake of magnitude 4.3 was felt and recorded in Kariba and its surrounding areas on Tuesday, according to the Zambezi River Authority.
In a statement by the Authority’s chief executive officer Munyaradzi Munodawafa, the Meteorological services Department triangulated the epicentre of the tremors to 50 kilometres South of Kariba near Bumi Hills.
Kariba and the Zambezi Basin area experience seismic activity that varies in intensity from moderate to intense earthquakes which are attributed to movements in the water levels in Lake Kariba.
The lake and surrounding areas fall in the Mid-Zambezi basin which is believed to be a dormant southern extension of the East Africa Rift system.
“Accordingly, the earthquakes are normal and expected. They are referred to as “reservoir induced tremors” because they are attributed to the presence of the lake. In the last twelve months, two earthquakes of equivalent magnitudes and several others of smaller magnitudes occurred south of the Kariba Dam. Of note are magnitude M4.5 and M4.6 earthquakes that occurred on 9 August 2021 and 24 May 2022, with epicentres near Binga and below the Lake respectively,” Munodawafa said.
The ZRA chief executive also advised the public that tremors of such a magnitude were not expected to affect the structural integrity of the dam, nor have any unusual observations been observed from inspections carried out on August 3.
In May, a 4.6 magnitude earthquake hit Kariba and surrounding areas causing extensive damage to some properties including a school in Binga.
The earthquake whose epicentre was determined to be in Lake Kariba hit the area in the mid-morning of May 24.