Rapid Emergency Assessment and Coordination Team (REACT) Murghob, Gorno-Badakhshan, Tajikistan: 7.2 Magnitude Earthquake Situation Update No. 3 (as of 9 December 2015)



  • At least two people have been trapped and killed under the rock-falls, while more than 14 injured.

  • As of 8 December, at least 237 houses have been fully and another 598 partially damaged.

  • At least 22 schools, including 4 medical points and 1 local hydro-power station among other social facilities are reported to have been destroyed and/or damaged in GBAO.

  •  An ad-hoc meeting by Government held on 8 December to conduct an aerial observation of Sarez lake and Usoi dam stability in coming days.

-- Government started debris removal of roads connecting communities, but resources are limited.

  •  Additional heavy machinery requested from Government departments by local authorities to open Rushan - Bartang road to evacuate affected communities.

  •  Geographic complexities of the area coupled with rock-falls prove to be the major impediments accessing the affected communities with unfavorable weather conditions restricting air communication.

- Severe weather conditions imply winterized shelter and food are priority needs of affected communities for immediate response.

Situation Overview

A 7.2 Magnitude earthquake occurred in Murghob district of Gorno-Badakhshan Autonomous Oblast (GBAO) at around 12.50 local time on 7 December 2015. At least 15 aftershocks of below 5 Magnitude have been recorded as of 8 December in Murghob district near the epicenter. Two people have been trapped under rock-falls and consequently killed according to reports from the Committee of Emergency Situations. Another 14 have sustained injuries with two considered as severely injured.

On 8 December, Committee of Emergency Situations, Main Geology Department and the Institute of Geology, Seismic Engineering and Seismology held a meeting to agree on an aerial observation of the lake Sarez and Usoi dam stability amidst catastrophic scenario of rupture of Usoi dam and possible devastating flooding across the region. UN, non-government organizations and donors plan to hold a meeting with Government on 10 December to discuss initial information on damage and identify potential relief and recovery interventions in support of Government of Tajikistan.

As of 8 December late evening, at least 835 houses have been fully destroyed or partially damaged throughout the Gorno-Badakhshan. In addition, other life-saving infrastructure, including roads, medical points and hydro-power stations and schools have been damaged. Below is a breakdown of information on damage at district and Jamoat levels made available by Committee of Emergency Situations.