Know About The Seismic Zones Of India


The Indian subcontinent has a history of Earthquakes. The reason for the intensity and high frequency of earthquakes is the Indian plate driving into Asia at a rate of approximately 47 mm/year. According to the Seismic Mapping report of the Ministry of Earth Science, a total of 59% of landmass of India is earthquake prone. To understand the seismic zones you must know about the category of seismic zones. Indian landmass is divided into 4 seismic zones.

The zones are Zone-II, Zone-III, Zone-IV and Zone-V. According to the intensity of earthquakes in the area.

A World Bank and United Nations report shows estimates that around 200 million city dwellers in India will be exposed to storms and earthquakes by 2050.

Seismic Zone-II

This region is classified as the Low Damage Risk Zone. It is the zone with low chances of having earthquakes. Cities like Trichy or Tiruchirappalli are in this zone ,ex- cities of Bulandshahr , Moradabad, Gorakhpur, Chandigarh. 

Seismic Zone-III

This zone is classified as a Moderate Damage Risk Zone. Around 30% of landmass of India is under seismic Zone-III. Several megacities like Chennai, Mumbai, Bengaluru, Kolkata and Bhubaneswar lie in this zone.

Seismic Zone-IV

This zone is called the High Damage Risk Zone. Around 18% of landmass of India comes under the Seismic Zone-IV. Jammu and Kashmir, Ladakh, Himachal Pradesh, Uttarakhand, Sikkim, parts of the Indo-Gangetic plains (North Punjab, Chandigarh, Western Uttar Pradesh, Terai, a major portion of Bihar, North Bengal, the Sundarbans) and the capital of the country Delhi fall in Zone 4. In Maharashtra, the Patan area (Koynanagar) is also in Zone 4.

Seismic Zone-V

Zone 5 covers the areas with the highest risk of suffering earthquakes. Around 11% of landmass of India comes under the Seismic Zone-V. It is the Very High Damage Risk Zone. The regions of Kashmir, the Western and Central Himalayas, North and Middle Bihar, the North-East Indian region, the Rann of Kutch and the Andaman and Nicobar group of islands fall in this zone.

Generally, the areas having trap rock or basaltic rock are prone to earthquakes.

Map of Zones in India

Seismic Zones

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