Earthquake preparedness: the case of Eastern UAE

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2 Citations (Scopus)


During the last 30 years, UAE witnessed earthquakes that ranged from minor to moderate, with maximum magnitude of 5.1 that occurred in the Masafi area (eastern UAE, on March 11, 2002). Recent earthquakes that hit Iran such as on May 11, 2013, caused tremors and mild shaking of buildings in some UAE cities. Although the tremors are small in magnitude, their sequences apparently become an important research topic and deserve more assessment from different perspectives such as geographical, geological, engineering, and social. This is because low risk does not equal no risk. This study is concerned with public perceptions of earthquake preparedness (reduction of disaster impact) that can be measured by various variables such as developing an emergency plan, preparation of disaster supply kits, and training. The methodology consists of a survey of 470 people who live around the Masafi area, near Fujairah city, UAE. GIS and GPS were used for site selection in conducting the survey, and remote sensing was used as an aid in identification of buildings’ ages. Results show that around 90% of the people surveyed have water tanks that can support them up to 3 days, and 60% of them normally buy food that can support them up to 2 days. Thirty percent of the respondents were familiar with storing first-aid kits and tools such as flashlights. The findings point to a need for more research regarding public awareness about earthquakes. The findings of this study may be useful for people who are involved in the four cornerstones of disaster risk reduction: community participation, public policy actions, safer construction and urban development, and development of a culture of prevention.

Original languageEnglish
Article number721
JournalArabian Journal of Geosciences
Issue number19
Publication statusPublished - Dec 1 2016


  • Earthquake
  • Public awareness
  • UAE

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Environmental Science
  • General Earth and Planetary Sciences


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