Spatio-temporal and hazard mapping of Earthquake in UAE (1984–2012): Remote sensing and GIS application

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24 Citations (Scopus)


Background: Assessment of historical earthquake events helps in revealing its distribution and coupling it with other geographical data provides a holistic view about areas and people that are affected. This study investigates the spatio-temporal distribution of earthquake events taking place in UAE and its effect on the population. Results: Analyzing data from 1984 to 2012 showed that during the period of 28 years there were frequent earthquakes that occurred with intensity ranges from mild to moderate with the maximum magnitude of 5.1. Spatially, earthquake events were found clustered in the Emirate of Fujairah in the Eastern part of UAE (Oman Thrust). Temporally, the maximum number of earthquake events (49% of the events) occurred in 2011 and this is in line with the United States Geological Survey (USGS) report that indicates in 2011 the earthquake activity reached its highest level in 20 years. Even the magnitude of the earthquakes is low, the frequency of being increased in the past few years coupled with urban development are point of concern and it becomes necessary to develop preventive measures such as hazard maps for the area. In this study seven parameters are used for generation of a hazard map, this includes geology, soil, slope, land use, historical earthquake events, fault line, and roads. GIS weighted overlay analysis is used to demarcate the earthquake risk zones. Conclusions: The resulting map prepared will help in systematic and proper development of land use for community planning and mitigation policy. To the knowledge of the author, the research is the first attempt that integrates diverse GIS data to produce hazard map for the Eastern part of UAE and therefore it adds acknowledge about the area. The methodology could be adopted by other regions around the world.

Original languageEnglish
Article number13
JournalGeoenvironmental Disasters
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - Dec 1 2015


  • Earthquake
  • GIS
  • Hazard map
  • Remote sensing
  • UAE

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Geography, Planning and Development
  • Safety, Risk, Reliability and Quality
  • Environmental Science (miscellaneous)
  • Geotechnical Engineering and Engineering Geology
  • Management, Monitoring, Policy and Law


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