Over 12,000 earthquakes recorded in São Jorge this week

Written By Lara Silva

The Azorean seismo-volcanic surveillance center (CIVISA) registered 210 minor tremors between 10 am and 10 pm local time on Saturday on the island of São Jorge in the Azores. Since March 19, there have been over 12,700 earthquakes recorded. Over 200 earthquakes of a magnitude up to 3.3 have been felt by the population.

The president of the Azorean government José Manuel Bolieiro announced on Saturday that President Marcelo Rebelo de Sousa is traveling to São Jorge on Sunday to show his support. The Portuguese President has said there is no reason to fear visiting the island. He told journalists in Fatima:

“The microearthquakes are an uncomfortable situation, but there is no reason to fear unsafety… There is a mid-term strategy in place to deal with the consequences and as the situation develops”.

However, authorities in the Azores are prepared to evacuate citizens due to the fear of a major earthquake or volcanic eruption. CIVISA raised the volcanic alert to level 4 of 5 on Wednesday so there is a possibility of an eruption. The last volcano eruption was in 1808 in Velas, São Jorge. There are 26 active volcanos in the Azores archipelago, 8 of which are underwater.
Around 8,400 people live on the island. Many have already left São Jorge, around 1,250 by air or sea in two days. Those living in Fajas in Velas, small pains at the bottom of mountains created by lava have been told to leave the area. The most vulnerable such as nursing home residents and those in hospitals in Velas have been taken to Calheta.

Guide to Sao Jorge Island, the Azores

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