Five buoys of Kandilli Observatory stolen from Marmara Sea

Five buoys of Kandilli Observatory stolen from Marmara Sea

Five buoys of Kandilli Observatory stolen from Marmara Sea

Some five whistling buoys placed in the Marmara Sea that guide equipment used by experts to observe seismic activities have been stolen, officials from Kandilli Observatory and Earthquake Research Center said on Feb. 3.

“Who stole them and for what? We really do not understand,” said Doğan Kalafat, the head of the Tsunami Research Department in Kandilli Observatory.

Making a call to people, Kalafat said, “If anyone saw these 2.5-meter-tall buoys, please contact us.”

According to the expert, each whistling buoy was worth around 30,000 Turkish Liras ($4,180).

Located in the Çengelköy neighborhood of the Üsküdar district in Istanbul, Kandilli Observatory makes observations of the seafloor in the Marmara Sea to detect a possible Marmara earthquake and the risk of a tsunami.

Kalafat highlighted the problems faced by the observatory due to the damages caused to equipment and cables by drifters, adding that the recent stealing of whistling buoys was shocking.

“Our five buoys are stolen, drifters damaged equipment cables, and only one seismic equipment is working,” Kalafat said.

Highlighting the damage caused to cables due to drifters, the head of Kandilli Observatory’s Earthquake Research Department, Haluk Özener, said: “We placed equipment and 70-kilometers-long fiber optic cables 1,200-meters deep in the sea. However, fishermen tore the cables with their drifters some 20 or 30 meters away from the shore.”

“Due to this, we have not been able to get instant data from the sea’s floor for six years,” he added.

“A huge budget is needed to replace new cables with the old ones damaged by fishermen. We need the private sector’s help,” Özener said.