The latest earthquake is one of the most powerful to hit the seismically active Turkey in almost 10 years. Here are some major earthquakes that have rocked the country.

A powerful 6.6 earthquake has hit Turkey’s coastal region of Izmir and Greece on Friday, with the epicentre originating in the Aegean Sea.

The impact was felt on islands opposite the Turkish coastline and as far afield as Istanbul, Turkey’s largest city.

So far there are six reported deaths and hundreds injured, both numbers are likely to be revised upwards as time passes with search and rescue operations underway.

Turkey is in a geographically seismic area with the country between the North Anatolian fault line running through the entirety of the landmass and the East Anatolian fault line running through the south of the country.

The first recorded earthquake in what is today’s Turkey is from 2003 years ago in year 17. In recent decades, however, there have been several powerful earthquakes that have left thousands dead and a lingering impact on the country.

A timeline of major earthquakes to hit Turkey: 

Erzincan, December 27 - 1939

Striking the city at 1:57 am while most of its inhabitants were sleeping, the 7.8 magnitude earthquake left almost 33,000 residents dead.

Many died because the earthquake struck in the middle of winter and a resulting blizzard and a flood made the city uninhabitable. It was abandoned and a new one was built to the north.

The region saw more magnitude 7 earthquakes and Turkey started to adopt building regulations in a bid to upgrade the safety of buildings.

Bolu-Gerede, February 1 - 1944

The powerful earthquake had a 7.4 magnitude and resulted in a knock-on effect in other towns alongside the Anatolian fault line.

Striking at 5:22 am, the earthquake left 2,790 people dead and 50,000 were destroyed or were heavily damaged.  

Bingol, May 22 -1971

Bingol was nearly destroyed after a 6.9 magnitude struck at 18:44 pm in the eastern city of Turkey. More than 90 percent of the buildings were destroyed leaving much of the population homeless and almost 1,000 people dead.

Izmit, August 17 - 1999 

The 7.6 magnitude earthquake struck the city of Izmit, 90km southeast of Istanbul at 3:01 am local time. The surrounding region is one of Turkey’s most important industrial regions.

It left more than 17,118 dead, 50,000 injured and upwards of 500,000 people homeless. Poor construction material was considered a factor in the high death toll. 

The economic fallout was estimated to be around $6.5 billion.

Van, October 23 - 2011

Considered one of the biggest earthquakes Turkey has had in recent years, at a magnitude of 7.2.

The earthquake left 640 dead and injured almost 2,000.

Elazig, January 24 - 2020

The 6.7 magnitude earthquake struck the eastern city of Turkey earlier this year leaving 41 people dead and injuring more than 1,600 dead.

More than 400 search and rescue teams were dispatched by Turkey’s Disaster and Emergency Management Authority to the region. Turkey’s Ministry of Interior, the military and the country’s Red Crescent were mobilised in the search and rescue effort. 

Source: TRT World