An earthquake in Pakistan on Tuesday created a brand new island off the country’s western coast. Residents of Gwadar spotted the island rise from the sea in the aftermath of the devastating trembler.
As The Inquisitr reported earlier, the Pakistan quake killed dozens and caused a massive amount of damage to Western Pakistan.
This isn’t the first time an island has appeared after an earthquake in the area. NBC News reports that older residents of the coastal town had a sense of déjà vu when they saw the island emerge.
Older residents recalled an earthquake in 1968 that produced a new island. The muddy spot of land stayed for a year before it vanished back into the sea.
Seismologists suspect the island created by Pakistan’s 7.7 magnitude earthquake is a temporary formation caused by a “mud volcano.”
ABC News notes that accounts of the size of the new island vary. Some residents claim the island is about 200 feet long and is located about a quarter-mile from the shoreline. One resident, Behram Baloch, called the island’s formation “nothing short of a miracle.”
John Armbruster, a seismologist at the Lamont Doherty Earth Observatory at Columbia University, explained that the island is not exactly a miracle. Instead, it is caused by shifting sand layers that compact and pressurize water. The water then gushed up and carried mud and sand with it.
An earthquake near Karachi also caused an island to form in the 1940s, though it didn’t last long. Armbruster explained that the new island was “big enough that people could land a boat and walk on it.” However, the sea quickly washed the muddy spit of land away.
Researchers with the United States Geological Survey are looking into the new island created by Pakistan’s earthquake. Meanwhile, rescue efforts are underway to find those trapped and injured by the massive quake.
[Image via Twitter]