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Earthquake Hazards Program

News Release

2003 December 26 01:56:52 UTC

Preliminary Earthquake Report
U.S. Geological Survey, National Earthquake Information Center
World Data Center for Seismology, Denver

The following is a release by the United States Geological Survey, National Earthquake Information Center: A strong earthquake occurred 180 km (115 miles) SE of Kerman, Iran at 6:56 PM MST, Dec 25, 2003 (Dec 26 at 5:26 AM local time in Iran). The magnitude and location may be revised when additional data and further analysis results are available.

About 31,000 people killed, 30,000 injured, 75,600 homeless and 85 percent of buildings damaged or destroyed in the Bam area. Maximum intensities IX at Bam and VIII at Baravat. Felt (V) at Kerman. Damage estimated at 32.7 million U.S. dollars. Surface ruptures associated with the Bam Fault were observed between Bam and Baravat. Maximum acceleration of 0.98g recorded at Bam. Landslides occurred in the epicentral area. Believed to be the largest earthquake in this area in more than 2000 years. A detailed report on this earthquake can be obtained from the International Institute of Earthquake Engineering and Seismology (IIEES), online at


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