1967 Earthquake at Koyna Dam, India

The Study of a Reservoir-Induced Earthquake © Adrienne Catone-Huber and Jennifer Smith

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The Koyna Dam and the Koyna Reservoir formed by it are located on the western side of India, about 200 kilometers south of Bombay (Mumbai), in the state of Maharashtra. The dam was built in 1962, and infilled with water in 1963. On December 11, 1967 at 4:21 local time, an earthquake with an approximate magnitude of 7.0 shook the region in and around the dam. The event caused roughly 200 deaths, 2200 injuries, and destroyed enough homes to render more than 5000 people homeless.

The area was believed to be seismically stable prior to this event, and most experts are convinced that this earthquake was reservoir-induced. The concept of a reservoir-induced (or dam-induced) earthquake is that the enormous pressure of the water behind the dam actually causes shifting in the underlying earth, eventually leading to increased seismicity.

The purpose of this project is to research and summarize the events leading up to the earthquake; document the physical dynamics associated with this particular earthquake and reservoir-induced earthquakes in general; assess the impact on people living and working in the area; and finally detail the community and worldwide response to the disaster.

To Koyna Home Page To Earthquake Timeline Page To Physical Dynamics Page To Human Impact Page To Social Response Page To References Page

Questions or comments? Feel free to e-mail Adrienne or Jennifer.

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The Koyna map was created (and is copyrighted) by cartography students Matt Page, Kenneth Bradshaw and Jennifer Anderson as part of a collaborative effort with California State University, Chico.