Giant crack opens in East African Rift Valley

By David Jacobson, Temblor

Check your hazard rank

This photo shows a large crack that recently appeared in the East African Rift Valley. The crack, which is up to 50 feet deep and 65 feet wide significantly damaged a major road and destroyed homes.


The East African Rift Valley is one of the most famous geologic regions on earth. Stretching for over 3,000 km from the Gulf of Aden in the north to Mozambique in the south, it marks where the African continent is being split into the Somali and Nubian plates. Scientists estimate that within 10 million years, the Somali plate will break off from the rest of Africa and a new ocean basin will form. Even though this is an extremely slow process, every once in a while, new crevices appear, highlighting the power of earth’s tectonic forces….

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