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Under the microscope of the Seismic Risk Assessment Committee 4 regions – What the scientists say

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Activity in Evia and Thebes is on the wane, but on Lesbos the context is more complex

The Permanent Special Scientific Committee for Seismic Risk Assessment and Seismic Risk Reduction of the OASP is on alert to assess the seismic activity throughout the country.

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Four areas have been put under the Commission’s microscope, namely the Lesbosthe CreteEvia and Thebes, where seismic tremors have recently occurred – with the main ones in Lesbos in the last week.

As explained to the Athenian-Macedonian News Agency, the president of the OASP and chairman of the Commission, Professor Efthymis Lekkas, the phenomenon in Euboea and Thebes is in retreat, however in Lesbos the context is more complex both tectonically and seismically. “On Lesvos there is a post-seismic sequence that is located in a specific area.

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In any case, it does not appear that the seismic activity is transferred to other faults, adjacent ones which have acted in the past and are associated with large earthquakes”, notes Mr. Lekkas to APE-MPE.

According to the unanimous conclusion of the Committee convened on Thursday, January 12 following a consultation between the Minister of Climate Crisis and Civil Protection, Christos Stylianidis and the president of the OASP and president of the Committee, Professor of Dynamic Tectonics Applied Geology & Natural Disaster Management, Efthymi Lekka, the seismic activity in Crete does not worry the members of the Commission as the seismic risk in Eastern Crete according to the data so far is extremely small.

As far as Evia and Thebes are concerned, as Mr. Lekkas emphasizes, the phenomenon is on the wane and there is no cause for concern, however, the newest data are constantly recorded and evaluated.

In addition, as Mr. Lekkas points out, the seismic activity observed in scattered areas in the Greek area in the last few days are just a coincidence. This is a unique relationship they have with each other.

The role of the OASP Permanent Special Scientific Committee for Seismic Risk Assessment and Seismic Risk Reduction

This is the role of the newly established Scientific Committee for Seismic Risk Assessment and Seismic Risk Reduction of the OASP, as in addition to assessing the seismic risk and the evolution of seismic activity, it is called upon to study the seismic risk depending on the area where the phenomenon occurs, analyzing essentially the effects that an earthquake will bring to each area (e.g. infrastructure).

The committee consists of six people, representing scientific and research institutions, while during the meetings they attend as observers and representatives of the Ministries of Climate Crisis and Civil Protection, the Ministry of the Interior as well as the Ministry of Infrastructure and Transport, who, however, do not have the right vote. In particular, scientists and researchers from the University of Athens, the National Technical University of Athens, the Aristotle University of Thessaloniki, the Geodynamic Institute of the National Observatory of Athens and the Technical School of AUTH are participating. These are people who have been selected following the recommendation of their bodies, while the chairman of the Committee is the president of the OASP, Professor Efthymis Lekkas, also acting as a supervised body of the Ministry of Climate Crisis and Civil Protection. The representative of each body does not submit his personal views but the views of his institution.

The purpose is for the committee to meet immediately, when necessary, contributing at the same time, through the conclusions it reaches, to the operational preparation and readiness of the Civil Protection and Fire Brigade forces. After each meeting, the Committee forwards its findings to the Ministry of Climate Crisis and Civil Protection, informing about the movements and actions that must be taken, if deemed necessary. Therefore, the committee’s conclusion also determines the level of preparation and readiness of the Civil Protection forces.

For its part, the Civil Protection, monitoring the seismic activity that has occurred in the Greek area recently, is proceeding with the continuous updating of the General Emergency Response and Earthquake Consequences Management Plan “ENGELADOS”, the implementation of which is the responsibility of the local government, with the aim of better preparation of municipalities and regions.

It is noted that the Committee has already met 3 times and remains on alert following the request of the Minister of Climate Crisis and Civil Protection, Chr. Stylianides in order to constantly monitor the developments and convene again if necessary.

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