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2004 Al Hoceima earthquake

Coordinates: 35°14′N 4°01′W / 35.23°N 4.02°W / 35.23; -4.02
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2004 Al Hoceima earthquake
2004 Al Hoceima earthquake is located in Morocco
2004 Al Hoceima earthquake
UTC time2004-02-24 02:27:47
ISC event7254476
Local date24 February 2004 (2004-02-24)
Local time02:27:47
Magnitude6.3 Mw[1]
Depth12.2 km (7.6 mi) [1]
Epicenter35°14′N 4°01′W / 35.23°N 4.02°W / 35.23; -4.02 [1]
Areas affectedMorocco
Max. intensityMMI IX (Violent) [2]
Peak acceleration0.24 g [2]
Casualties628–631 dead [3]
926 injured [3]
12,539–15,000 displaced [3]

The 2004 Al Hoceima earthquake occurred on 24 February at 02:27:47 local time near the coast of northern Morocco. The strike-slip earthquake measured 6.3 on the moment magnitude scale and had a maximum perceived intensity of IX (Violent) on the Mercalli intensity scale. Between 628 and 631 people were killed, 926 injured, and up to 15,000 people were rendered homeless in the Al Hoceima-Imzourene-Beni Abdallah area.


The moment tensor and pattern of surface cracks indicate left-lateral strike-slip faulting on a buried NE-SW trending fault.

This earthquake occurred near the epicenter of the magnitude 6.0 Al Hoceima earthquake of May 26, 1994, that had injured one person and caused significant damage to buildings.[4]


Ground cracks and landslides were observed between Ajdir and Beni Abdallah and maximum peak ground acceleration of 0.24g was recorded near Imzourene. Many fatalities occurred in Al Hoceima, a coastal city along the Mediterranean Sea. Mohammed Boudra, the mayor of Al Hoceima, said most of the casualties were women and children. Further inland, many more residents of scattered villages within the Rif Mountains died. The mud houses of Tazaghin, Tizi Ayash and Imzourn, villages on the mountain, were damaged. The village of Ait Kamara was also "completely destroyed".[5]


Several aftershocks killed at least three people and destroyed previously weakened buildings. This earthquake occurred near the eastern end of the Rif mountain belt, which is part of the diffuse boundary between the African and Eurasian plates.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b c ISC (2015), ISC-GEM Global Instrumental Earthquake Catalogue (1900–2009), Version 2.0, International Seismological Centre
  2. ^ a b c USGS. "M6.4 – Strait of Gibraltar". United States Geological Survey.
  3. ^ a b c USGS (September 4, 2009), PAGER-CAT Earthquake Catalog, Version 2008_06.1, United States Geological Survey, archived from the original on 2020-03-13
  4. ^ Goodman, Al (February 25, 2004). "Over 500 killed in Morocco quake". CNN. Archived from the original on July 13, 2012. Retrieved October 28, 2013.
  5. ^ Goodman, Al (25 February 2004). "Over 500 killed in Morocco quake". CNN. Retrieved 11 November 2023.

Further reading[edit]

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