February 5, 2023

Athens News

News in English from Greece

Seismologists about the gas network in Athens: “If we have a strong earthquake, everything will burn”


Seismologists Akis Tselentis and Efthymios Lekkas have warned of a powerful earthquake in the eastern part of the Gulf of Corinth. According to scientists, if this happens, there will be huge casualties and destruction in Attica.

“If an earthquake occurs in the Alcyonides region in Corinthia, it will be approximately from 6 to 6.5 points on the Richter scale. Moreover, the closer its epicenter is to Athens, the more problems there will be,” said seismologist Akis Tselendis. The director of the Athens Geodynamic Institute, speaking to SKAI, expressed strong concerns about the Alcyonides region, saying that he informed the relevant authorities and Mr. Lekkas: “We are concerned about the fault in the eastern Gulf of Corinth. I have been talking about this for several days, but I have not hear. The eastern part of the Gulf of Corinth has gained a lot of energy. For 40 years, energy has been accumulating for a powerful earthquake. At some point, it will definitely happen. In this case, its intensity will be approximately 6 to 6.5 on the Richter scale. The closer to Athens the more problems we will have,” he said.

“The fact is that Athens has at least 2 serious vulnerabilities:

  1. Lots of old buildings before the 60s and 50s of the 20th century, which were not designed for seismic resistance, unlike buildings of a later construction.
  2. Athens has a dense network of low-pressure gas pipelines that go to homes. Imagine that during an earthquake our building collapsed and there was a gas leak. The entire area will burn to the ground. I have been saying for a long time that anti-seismic valves should be installed in gas pipelines,” he continued.

In addition to the East Corinthian fault, Celentis reiterated that he was concerned about other areas. “I am very concerned about the eastern part of the Gulf of Corinth. I am also very concerned about some other areas that I cannot mention so as not to frighten people. The issue is too delicate. I have given relevant recommendations, informed the relevant authorities. We are in constant cooperation with Mr. Lekkas and we constantly communicate on such issues,” he stressed.

Seismologist Efthymios Lekkas confirmed in a statement former statementthat he has information that powerful earthquakes are expected in areas in seismic excitation, such as the Alcyonides.

“Greece is characterized by high seismicity, and it is impossible to determine in time when an earthquake will occur. We have been studying information and conducting research for many years in all regions of the country, mainly in places where we have a seismic history or suspicion that serious seismic activity may occur ” Lekkas said.

“The Seismic Risk Assessment Committee, unfortunately, did not respond to our warnings. Following the instructions of Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis and Minister for Climate Crisis and Civil Protection Christos Stylianidis, this committee now consists of five people who will make quick decisions, inform state, inform institutions, but … there are no knowledgeable seismologists in it.”



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