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Expert warns against destabilising salt bed in Gulf region

Warning that destablising the thick salt layer underlying the Gulf region’s rock column through massive urbanisation or nuclear explosion could trigger earthquakes, a seismologist has said research suggested that many recent earthquakes in the region originated in that layer.

He said the conference, Gulf Seismicity Forum 2005, underlined the need for networking among various monitoring bodies of the region to effectively respond to natural disasters like earthquakes. He stressed the need to integrate such networks with 24-hour surveillance of the region by remote sensing to monitor any other large-scale natural hazards such as oil spills.

Dr. Fadhil Sadooni, the head of the UAE University’s Geology Department suggested that the implementation of such advanced technology should be accompanied by extensive training programmes for the local police and civil defence on intervention and mitigation.

The conference also recommended the establishment of an Internet-based database to exchange data regarding natural hazards.