A total of 49 earthquakes with a magnitude 2.0 or greater struck the Korean Peninsula last year, with the strongest temblor measuring 5.1 in magnitude, the state weather agency said Thursday.
Last year's tally is slightly higher than the annual average of 47.7 quakes between 1999 and 2013, the Korea Meteorological Administration (KMA) said.
Eight of the quakes recorded last year had a magnitude of 3.0 or higher with 11 of them strong enough to be felt by humans, it said.
The strongest 5.1-magnitude earthquake was reported in waters about 100 kilometers northwest of the West Gyeongnyeolbi Archipelago off Taean on the central west coast on April 1, the agency said. It was the fourth-largest quake to hit the Korean Peninsula since seismic monitoring began in 1978.
The temblor shook homes and other structures in Taean and Seosan and was felt even in Seoul, Incheon and its adjacent areas, but there were no reports of serious damage.
Of the total quakes, 23 hit inland regions with the remainder occurring beneath the sea. By region, 10 quakes were detected in the southeastern city of Daegu and its surrounding North Gyeongsang Province, and seven in North Korea.
South Korea is deemed relatively safe from major earthquakes as it is situated deep inside the Eurasian tectonic plate, with the closest major fault line a thousand kilometers away. (Yonhap)