Cause of Afghan Quake Is a Deep Mystery
Scientists aren’t sure how earthquakes like Monday's form 130 miles underground.
The magnitude 7.5 earthquake that shook northeast Afghanistan and Pakistan on Monday was a type of quake not easily understood by scientists, even though it happened in what the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) calls “one of the most seismically hazardous regions on Earth.”
The quake in the Hindu Kush mountain range triggered landslides, destroyed buildings, and killed more than 100 people, and rescue workers are still assessing the damage. About 16 earthquakes at least this strong strike around the world annually. In the last century, seven of them have happened within 155 miles (250 kilometers) of Monday’s earthquake.
But geologists don’t have detailed seismic monitoring from the Hindu Kush range because of its remoteness and proximity to conflict,