Skip to main content

Pakistan quake kills more than 200 people; island appears

By CNN Staff
September 25, 2013 -- Updated 0640 GMT (1440 HKT)
STORY HIGHLIGHTS
  • NEW: The death toll rises to 208; about 350 injured
  • The quake is powerful enough to create a small island off the coast, officials say
  • The earthquake struck a remote area, Pakistani officials say
  • Aftershocks are felt in Karachi, hundreds of miles to the southeast

Islamabad, Pakistan (CNN) -- An earthquake in Pakistan, powerful enough to prompt the appearance of a small island off the coast, has killed more than 200 people, Pakistani officials said.

The 7.7-magnitude quake struck in a remote area of southwestern Pakistan on Tuesday, but it had severe consequences.

At least 208 people were killed in the district of Awaran and the city of Turbut in Balochistan province, Asad Gilani, the provincial home secretary, said Wednesday.

In addition to the fatalities, around 350 people have been injured, he said, and more people are still trapped in rubble.

The quake was strong enough to cause a mass 20 to 30 feet high to emerge from the Arabian Sea like a small mountain island off the coast of Gwadar, local police official Mozzam Jah said. A large number of people gathered to view the newly formed island, he said.

Large quakes can cause significant deformation to the earth's crust, particularly visible along coastlines.

The island is about 100 feet in diameter and about one mile off the coast, GEO TV reported.

Zahid Rafi, principal seismologist for the National Seismic Monitoring Center, confirmed the island had formed. He said it was "not surprising," considering the magnitude of the earthquake.

But John Bellini, a geophysicist with the U.S. Geological Survey, said that generally it would be unlikely for such a large island to emerge from a quake like Tuesday's.

Many things, such as the tide, could come into play regarding the rise of the island, he said.

More than 1,000 troops will be sent to the area to provide aid, including rescue teams and medical teams, Maj. Gen. Asim Bajwa said.

With a depth of about nine miles (about 15 kilometers), the quake struck 43 miles (69 kilometers) northeast of Awaran and 71 miles (114 kilometers) northwest of Bela, the U.S. Geological Survey said.

Some mud-walled homes fell in Awaran, said Latif Kakar, director of the Provincial Disaster Management Authority in Balochistan.

The tremors lasted two minutes. People flocked out onto the streets of Quetta, the provincial capital.

Aftershocks could be felt in Karachi, hundreds of miles to the southeast.

CNN's Mari Ramos and Elizabeth Joseph, and journalist Sophia Saifi contributed to this report.

ADVERTISEMENT
Part of complete coverage on
August 21, 2014 -- Updated 1720 GMT (0120 HKT)
The beheading of U.S. journalist James Foley by ISIS militants brings into focus the risks faced by reporters in conflict zones.
August 21, 2014 -- Updated 1224 GMT (2024 HKT)
About $35,000 was taken from the bank accounts of four passengers on board Flight 370.
August 21, 2014 -- Updated 1353 GMT (2153 HKT)
Five survivors of acid attacks capture India's attention with a "ground breaking" photo shoot.
August 20, 2014 -- Updated 1732 GMT (0132 HKT)
The execution of a journalist by a British-accented jihadist is a direct challenge to the international community. It's time for the U.S. to move, writes Frida Ghitis.
August 20, 2014 -- Updated 1219 GMT (2019 HKT)
In an exclusive CNN interview, Lance Armstrong admits to having a "f**k you" attitude.
August 19, 2014 -- Updated 0858 GMT (1658 HKT)
Summer isn't over yet. These new hotels are keeping it alive and fresh.
August 20, 2014 -- Updated 1535 GMT (2335 HKT)
You've seen her turn on the catwalk, but her income might make your head spin.
August 20, 2014 -- Updated 0036 GMT (0836 HKT)
The pain that Michael Brown's parents are going through is something Sybrina Fulton can relate to. She, too, lost a son in a controversial shooting.
August 19, 2014 -- Updated 0904 GMT (1704 HKT)
19-year-old Udi Segal explains why he won't join the country's military.
Drinkers guzzled an incredible 10.3 billion liters of this brand in 2013, making it the world's No.1 beer. And you may have never heard of it.
CNN joins the fight to end modern-day slavery by shining a spotlight on its horrors and highlighting success stories.
Browse through images from CNN teams around the world that you don't always see on news reports.
ADVERTISEMENT