A new island emerged from the sea just minutes after a major earthquake hit the Pakistani coastal town of Gwadar. The island appeared just about a half of a mile offshore, where there was once an uninterrupted ocean view, according to the BBC on Sept. 25.
When a local journalist, Bahram Baloch, got the news of a new island off shore of their town from a friend’s text message, he stepped outside his front door to give it a gander. There it was, an island where there was just ocean an hour before.
"I stepped out, and was flabbergasted. I could see this grey, dome-shaped body in the distance, like a giant whale swimming near the surface. Hundreds of people had gathered to watch it in disbelief. We could hear the hissing sound of the escaping gas”
What is the first thing you’d want to do if a new island appeared off shore? Go exploring of course, and that is just what Baloch and his friends did. How unique it is to be the first people to step on a piece of land that no one has every stepped on before. Baloch went with some of his friends out to the island on Wednesday morning to check it out and to take pictures. He described the shape of the island as:
"It's an oval shaped island which is about 250ft to 300ft (76-91m) in length, and about 60 to 70ft above the water."
The surface is jagged rocks, much of it is very muddy. This you would expect after this chunk of land has been steeping in water for hundreds or even thousands of years.
Part of this new island is mostly made up of fine- to coarse-grained sand. Another part of it is solid rock, which is where Balock and his friends landed, much like Christopher Columbus landing in the new world!
It seems that the island emerged so quickly that it brought fish up to the surface with it, which are all dead now. One part of the island has a hissing sound, which was escaping gas. There was no smell of gas, but the group did put a match to the gas coming out of one of the fissures and it caught fire.
Once they lit the fire, they found it extremely hard to extinguish it. Even the sea water wasn’t putting it out. Once they did manage to put out the fire, they probably thought twice about doing that again.
This same hill had jutted out of the water about 60 or 70 years ago, the elders in the village said. Now they are saying that the quake brought it back. They named the hill at the time “Zalzala Koh,” translated this means “quake hill.” Experts say while an island or “hill” as the locals call it, did emerge years ago, it was about 100 miles down the coast.
This is the fourth island to appear in this region since 1945, and it is the third such island in the last 15 years. This island is expected to disappear back into the sea during the monsoon season.