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Sunday, 30 June 2024 13:54

Council for Geoscience confirms tremor of 2.3 magnitude felt in parts of Johannesburg.

By Lehlohonolo Lehana.

The Council for Geoscience (CGS) spokesperson Mahlatse Mononela has confirmed that parts of Johannesburg were hit by a 2.3 magnitude earthquake.

The earthquake was felt in parts of Roodepoort, Soweto, Auckland Park, Naturena, Turffontein and Weltevreden Park among other areas.

"We can confirm that a 2.3 magnitude earth tremor occurred at around 18:26 this evening in Johannesburg South. It was followed by an aftershock that was felt at least 3.9km from the epicentre measuring 1.6 magnitude."

Mononela said the magnitude is prelimanary until the data is analysed.

"Our seismologists will analyse the data from the seismic monitoring stations on Sunday."

City of Johannesburg Emergency Services said no major incidents or injuries reported at this stage.

"Tremor reported in most parts of the city of Johannesburg especially in areas like Soweto, Kibler Park and Naturena and surrounding areas. At this stage, there are no injuries or major incidents that were reported overnight through our emergency call centre. Residents are urged to be safe."

The CGS believes Gauteng is more stable in terms of its tectonic activity than KwaZulu-Natal or even the Western Cape but this is not cast in stone. 

The CGS and Earthquakelist.org, a resource for earthquakes happening across the planet, both warned that aftershocks should not be ruled out, although they believed these were unlikely and would probably be small if they did occur.

Large earthquakes are relatively rare in Africa. Only four earthquakes with M>7 have been recorded since 1900, the largest being a M7.3 event in Tanzania in 1910. African countries exposed to the highest risk are Morocco and Algeria, and countries that straddle the East African Rift.