4.9 magnitude earthquake strikes Uganda–South Sudan border region

4.9 magnitude earthquake strikes Uganda–South Sudan border region

Yumbe, Uganda | URN | A 4.9 magnitude earthquake hit the border areas of Uganda and South Sudan on Monday 13, November 2023 evening according to the United States Geological Survey (USGS). The quake struck at 9:54pm near Yei in Central Equatoria state, some 36 km North of Yumbe district in the Northern Region, Uganda.

The 4.9 magnitude earthquake hit the Uganda–South Sudan border area at a shallow depth of 8.4 km and didn’t cause significant damage. According to USGS, weak shakings as a result of the earthquake were however felt in the districts of Yumbe, some 52 kilometers from the epicenter, Moyo, 63 km away, Adjumani, 87 km away, Arua 107 km away and Juba city 110 km away.

The tremor sent some people in Northern Uganda who hadn’t slept at the time into panic and confusion. Olivia Milanzi, a resident of Arua Central Division in Arua City, says that she felt a strong vibration that left her room shaking.

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She noted that it was her first time experiencing such a strong earthquake. “I ran out of my house thinking it was going to collapse. The vibration was really very strong,” she said.

Hundreds of miles away from the epicenter in Gulu City, Emma Ajok, a resident of Pece-Laroo Division was seated with her son on a chair in their living room when she felt the tremor.

“I was seated on my chair with my son Josh, I felt my chair shaking. I thought he was the one pushing it after the whole house was vibrating, later I thought somebody was driving my car, but it was a strange movement.” 

She added; “Josh ran away from where he was seated while shouting Mum the house is going to fall, let’s get outside.”

The 4.9 magnitude earthquake on the Uganda–South Sudan border serves as a wake-up call for both residents and authorities in the region. As scientists delve into the geological aspects of the event, it is essential for communities to stay informed and prepared. This seismic activity underscores the importance of proactive measures to mitigate the impact of earthquakes and ensure the safety and well-being of those living in earthquake-prone regions.