By: Rajini KG
February 16 2023
The 1915 Çanakkale bridge was constructed by two South Korean firms and is more than 1,200 km from the earthquake's epicenter.
On February 6, two earthquakes devastated southern and central Turkey and northern and western Syria. Buildings were destroyed, and more than 35,000 people were killed. Following this, many videos and images related to the earthquakes have gone viral online. On February 13, 2023, the official Twitter handle of the Chinese Embassy in France posted a video of what appears to be the Çanakkale bridge in Turkey with the caption translated here from French: "The bridge built by China in Turkey withstood the earthquake. #chinatech." While the tweet has now been deleted, it garnered over 163,000 views and 184 likes, an archive link accessed by Logically shows. Other users also shared the video with similar claims, like "The bridge built by China in Turkey's epicenter was intact in the earthquake."
However, the Çanakkale bridge was constructed by South Korean firms. It was not built on the epicenter of the Turkey earthquake.
Through reverse searching screengrabs from the footage, we confirmed the video shows the 1915 Çanakkale bridge over the Dardanelles Strait in Turkey. According to the Investment Office of the Presidency of Turkey, on March 18, 2022, to mark the 107th anniversary of the Çanakkale victory, President Recep Tayyip Erdogan inaugurated the bridge and the Malkara-Anakkale highway that runs through it. According to the government website, the bridge was constructed by two South Korean contractors — DL E&C Co., Ltd. (DL E&C) and SK Ecoplant — and Turkish contractors Limak and Yapi Merkezi.
The website Global Construction Review reports that the bid to construct the 3.6 km suspension bridge across the Dardanelles Strait between European and Asian Turkey was won by a consortium consisting of the Daelim, SK Group, Limak, and Yapi Merkezi in 2017. It also mentions that China Road, Bridge Consortium, and Cengiz and Kolin of Turkey also formed a consortium and bid $2.67 billion but did not win. According to the DL E&C, the company, along with SK Ecoplant, will operate the bridge, including its planning, purchasing, and building, for 16 years and 2 months and will later hand it over to the Turkish government.
The bridge joins the Çanakkale Strait, facing Lapseki and Gelibolu areas in Turkey's Çanakkale Province. Çanakkale is a city in northwestern Turkey that is more than 1,200 km from the earthquake's epicenter. The NASA trajectory for the February 6 earthquake shows the locations where earthquakes hit Turkey. It doesn't point to the Çanakkale province. This also confirms that the bridge is not located at the epicenter of earthquakes. There are no reports of the bridge suffering any damage due to the earthquake in Turkey.
The Çanakkale bridge was constructed by South Korean firms in partnership with two Turkish contractors and not by Chinese firms. It is not located at the epicenter of the Turkey earthquake. Therefore, we have marked this claim as misleading.