GUILLERMO GUTIERREZ

Photographer
      
Moroccan Earthquake
Location: Spain, Madrid
Nationality: Peruvian/Spanish
Biography: Freelance photographer with a decade of professional experience, currently based in Madrid, Spain. I specialize in documentary photography and photojournalism. My previous background as an architect has significantly enriched my ability to... MORE
Public Story
Moroccan Earthquake
Copyright GUILLERMO GUTIERREZ 2024
Updated Dec 2023
Topics Spotlight
Morocco has a history of significant earthquakes, and the earthquake that took place shortly after 11:00 p.m. on Friday, September 8, 2023, marked the strongest to affect the region in more than a century. The tremor, with a magnitude of 6.8 on the Richter scale, shook the area  near Oukaïmedene in the High Atlas Mountains, causing substantial devastation approximately 45 miles southwest of Marrakech in Al Haouz province. The shallow temblor, along with subsequent aftershocks, claimed over 2,900 lives and left 5,500 individuals injured, devastating homes and buildings, and spreading terror among residents. This seismic event inflicted severe damage on Marrakech's historic area and caused widespread destruction in remote settlements within the Atlas Mountains. 

The impact of the earthquake was compounded by its severe effects on the hard-to-reach hillsides and valleys in Al Haouz province. Mountain roads became impassable due to debris from landslides, significantly impeding relief efforts and causing delays in reaching remote villages for days. The government's management of disaster recovery faced criticism, particularly regarding the selective acceptance of international assistance, further complicating relief operations in inaccessible areas.

 The World Health Organization noted that over 300,000 people were adversely affected by the tremor, highlighting the magnitude of the humanitarian crisis. 
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