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Earthquake in Morocco

A rare powerful 6.8 magnitude earthquake struck Morocco at around 11pm local time on the 8th September claiming over 3000 lives, affecting 30,000 people, collapsing homes, blocking roads and causing buildings to sway as far away as the country's northern coast. The shaking only lasted for several seconds but caused unimaginable devastation.

The tectonic activity in Morocco primarily involves the convergence of the Eurasian and the Nubian (African) plates. The Eurasian Plate pushing against the Nubian Plate is what led to the formation of the Atlas Mountains, which run through Morocco, Algeria and Tunisia. 

The epicentre was located in the Ighil area, a mountainous rural commune home to small farming villages in the Al-Haouz province near the ski resort of Oukaimeden in the Atlas Mountains 70 kilometres from Marrakesh. The earthquake was felt all over the country, including in the provinces of Ouarzazate, Marrakesh, Azilal, Chichaoua and Taroudant with tremors being felt as far away as Huelva and Jaen in southern Spain.

The Moroccan armed forces deployed rescue teams to provide affected areas with clean drinking water, food supplies, tents and blankets. However, some remote areas were hard to reach due to obstructed roads and the fact that they are so isolated. Several other countries, including Israel, France, Spain, Italy and the US, offered aid. 

Earthquakes of this size are uncommon in the region but not unexpected, according to experts. Since 1900, there have been 9 magnitude 5 and stronger earthquakes within 500km (311 miles) of this disaster, none of which exceeded magnitude 6 on the richter scale.

Related News and Resources

Type of Event:Earthquake
Location of Event:Morocco
Date of Charter Activation:2023-09-09
Time of Charter Activation:15:46
Time zone of Charter Activation:UTC+07:00
Charter Requestor:UNITAR on behalf of International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies (IFRC)
Activation ID:838
Project Management:UNITAR
Value Adding:IFRC
Copernicus EMS (Copernicus EMS)
UAESA
Moroccan Space Agency (CRTS)
Mohammed Bin Rashid Space Centre
Konstantin Homenkov (Geoniformation systems)
SERTIT
Lahache Guillaume (Predict Services)
British Geological Survey
Corné van der Sande (eLEAF)
K-water Research Institute
Hamza Ait Zamzami (Reising)
Activation handled in collaboration with Copernicus Emergency Management Service

Products

Earthquake in Commune Adassil - Chichaoua, Morocco

Copyright: © (2023) DigitalGlobe, Inc., Longmont CO USA 80503. DigitalGlobe and the DigitalGlobe logos are trademarks of DigitalGlobe, Inc. The use and/or dissemination of this data and/or of any product in any way derived there from are restricted. Unauthorized use and/or dissemination is prohibited.
Map produced by RESING and eLEAF

Information about the Product

Acquired: 10/09/2023

Source: WorldView-2

Category: Reference Map

Earthquakes in Morocco, commune Anougal, Haouz

Copyright: WorldView-2 © (2023) DigitalGlobe, Inc., Longmont CO USA 80503. DigitalGlobe and the DigitalGlobe logos are trademarks of DigitalGlobe, Inc. The use and/or dissemination of this data and/or of any product in any way derived there from are restricted. Unauthorized use and/or dissemination is prohibited
Map produced by RESING and eLEAF

Information about the Product

Acquired: 11/09/2023

Source: WorldView-2

Category: Reference Map

A Ground Deformation Map after the Earthquake in Medina of Essaouira, Morocco

Copyright: Contains modified Copernicus Sentinel data (2023)
Map produced by UE Geoinformation Systems.

Information about the Product

Acquired: 04/09/2023 and 16/09/2023

Source: Sentinel-1

Category: Delineation Map

A Ground Deformation Map after the Earthquake in Chichaoua, Morocco

Copyright: Contains modified Copernicus Sentinel data (2023)
Map produced by UE Geoinformation Systems.

Information about the Product

Acquired: 04/09/2023 and 16/09/2023

Source: Sentinel-1

Category: Delineation Map

A Ground Deformation Map after the Earthquake in Taroudant, Morocco

Copyright: Contains modified Copernicus Sentinel data (2023)
Map produced by UE Geoinformation Systems

Information about the Product

Acquired: 04/09/2023 and 16/09/2023

Source: Sentinel-1

Category: Delineation Map

The ground deformation map after 6.8M earthquake in Ksar of Ait-Ben-Haddou

Copyright: Contains modified Copernicus Sentinel data (2023)
Map produced by UE "Geoinformation Systems"

Information about the Product

Acquired: 30/08/2023, 11/09/2023

Source: Sentinel-1

Category: Delineation Map

Impact map of the earthquake in Marrakech

Copyright: Includes Pleiades material © CNES (2023), Distribution Airbus DS.
Map produced by ICube-SERTIT

Information about the Product

Acquired: 10/09/2023

Source: Pleiades

Category: Grading Map

DInSAR fringes map of Morocco Earthquake

Copyright: Contains modified Copernicus Sentinel data (2023)
Map produced by K-water Research Institute

Information about the Product

Acquired: 03/09/2023,15/09/2023

Source: Sentinel-1

Category: Delineation Map

Grading Product with the damage grade assessment over Tamarirt

Download the full report

Copyright: Includes Pleiades material © CNES (2023), Distribution Airbus DS.
Report produced by Copernicus EMS

Information about the Product

Acquired: 10/09/2023

Source: Pleiades

Category: Grading Map

Power Supply Assessment Following the earthquake in Adassil/Al Haouz

Download the full report

Copyright: International Research Center of Big Data for Sustainable Development Goals (CBAS)
Copyright: NASA
Origin Space Co., Ltd., China
Report created by UNITAR / UNOSAT

Information about the Product

Acquired: Suomi NPP: 31/08/2023
SDGSAT-1: 04/09/2023
Yangwang-1 Space Telescope: 14/09/2023
VIIRS: 01/07/2023 - 17/09/2023

Source: Suomi-NPP, Yangwang-1 Space Telescope, VIIRS and SDGSAT-1

Category: Delineation Monitoring Maps

Preliminary Landslides Assessment for the Morocco Earthquake

Download the full report

Copyright: WorldView-2 © (2023) DigitalGlobe, Inc., Longmont CO USA 80503. DigitalGlobe and the DigitalGlobe logos are trademarks of DigitalGlobe, Inc. The use and/or dissemination of this data and/or of any product in any way derived there from are restricted. Unauthorized use and/or dissemination is prohibited
Includes Pleiades material © CNES (2023), Distribution Airbus DS.
GeoEye-1 © 2004 GeoEye NextView License
Report created by The British Geological Survey

Information about the Product

Acquired: WorldView-2: 25/03/2023, 07/07/2022, 13/09/2023, 14/09/2023
Pleiades: 10/09/2023
GeoEye-1: 13/09/2023

Source: WorldView-2, Pleiades, GeoEye-1

Category: Dossier

Satellite Imagery Derived Earthquake Damage Assessment of the Al Haouz Region, Morocco

Download the Full Report

Copyright: © (2023) DigitalGlobe, Inc., Longmont CO USA 80503.
DigitalGlobe and the DigitalGlobe logos are trademarks of DigitalGlobe, Inc. The use and/or dissemination of this data and/or of any product in any way derived there from are restricted. Unauthorized use and/or dissemination is prohibited.
Report produced by the Mohammed bin Rashid Space Centre.

Information about the Product

Acquired: WorldView-3: 10/09/2023
WorldView-2: 13/09/2023

Source: WorldView-2 and WorldView-3

Category: Delineation Map

Ground deformation map of Adassil, M'Zouda after 6.8 magnitude earthquake

Copyright: Contains modified Copernicus Sentinel data (2023)
Map produced by UE "Geoinfomation Systems"

Information about the Product

Acquired: 30/08/2023, 11/09/2023

Source: Sentinel-1

Category: Delineation Map

First look at Collapsed Buildings, Morocco

Copyright: Contains modified Copernicus Sentinel data (2023)
Optical imagery provided by Maxar for disaster management
Map produced by Bayanat

Information about the Product

Acquired: 30/08/2023, 11/09/2023

Source: Sentinel-1

Category: Grading Map

Ground deformation map of Ouarzazate after the 6.8 magnitude earthquake

Copyright: Contains modified Copernicus Sentinel data (2023)
Map produced by UE "Geoinfomation Systems"

Information about the Product

Acquired: 30/08/2023, 11/09/2023

Source: Sentinel-1

Category: Delineation Map

Ground deformation map of Marrakesh after 6.8 magnitude earthquake

Copyright: Contains modified Copernicus Sentinel data (2023)
Map produced by UE "Geoinfomation Systems"

Information about the Product

Acquired: 30/08/2023, 11/09/2023

Source: Sentinel-1

Category: Delineation Map

Preliminary satellite flood assessment report of the earthquake in the Chichaoua Province, Marrakech-Safi Region, Morocco

Download the full report

Copyright: Includes Pleiades material © CNES (2023), Distribution Airbus DS.
WorldView-2 © (2023) DigitalGlobe, Inc., Longmont CO USA 80503. DigitalGlobe and the DigitalGlobe logos are trademarks of DigitalGlobe, Inc. The use and/or dissemination of this data and/or of any product in any way derived there from are restricted. Unauthorized use and/or dissemination is prohibited.
Report produced by UNITAR/UNOSAT

Information about the Product

Acquired: WorldView-2: 25/03/2023 Pleiades: 10/09/2023

Source: Pleiades / WorldView-2

Category: Reference Map

Preliminary Night-time Light Loss Assessment Following the Adassil/Al Haouz Earthquake in the Marrakech-Safi Region

Download Full Report

Copyright: Suomi NPP/VIIRS © NASA (2023)
Report produced by UNITAR/UNOSAT

Information about the Product

Acquired: 10/09/2023

Source: Suomi NPP

Category: Reference Map

Damage Assessment in Chichaoua, Marrakech-Safi Region, Morocco

Copyright: Includes Pleiades material © CNES (2023), Distribution Airbus DS.
Map produced by UNITAR/UNOSAT

Information about the Product

Acquired: 10/09/2023

Source: Pleiades

Category: Grading Map

Initial assessment of towns and villages affected by the earthquake, based on available satellite imagery

Download the full report

Copyright: Includes Pleiades material © CNES (2023), Distribution Airbus DS.
Report produced by Predict

Information about the Product

Acquired: 10/09/2023

Source: Pleiades

Category: Grading Map

Initial assessment of towns and villages affected by the earthquake, based on available satellite imagery

Download the full report

Copyright: Includes Pleiades material © CNES (2023), Distribution Airbus DS.
Report produced by Predict

Information about the Product

Acquired: 10/09/2023

Source: Pleiades

Category: Grading Map

Damage Assessment in Adassil, Chichaoua Province, Marrakech-Safi Region, Morocco

Copyright: Includes Pleiades material © CNES (2023), Distribution Airbus DS.
Map produced by UNITAR/UNOSAT

Information about the Product

Acquired: 10/09/2023

Source: Pleiades

Category: Grading Map

Damage Assessment in Douar Tagadirte (Igermane), Chichaoua Province, Marrakech-Safi Region, Morocco

Copyright: Includes Pleiades material © CNES (2023), Distribution Airbus DS.
Map produced by UNITAR/UNOSAT

Information about the Product

Acquired: 10/09/2023

Source: Pleiades

Category: Reference Map

Damage Assessment in Taroudant, Taroudant Region, Souss Massa Province, Morocco

Copyright: Includes Pleiades material © CNES (2023), Distribution Airbus DS.
Map produced by UNITAR/UNOSAT

Information about the Product

Acquired: 10/09/2023

Source: Pleiades

Category: Grading Map

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