Mother Nature has no bounds. It is like two sides of a coin, humans survive and exist because of its credence and then when nature exhibits its wrath, lives are lost and no one has any control over such immense destruction. Earthquakes are a major cause of concern of natural catastrophe. Along with causing huge vibrations on the Earth’s surface which leads to loss of lives, falling up of buildings and causing huge loss, earthquakes are also known to be the main reason of tsunamis and other such natural disasters.
The earthquake having the highest magnitude ever recorded was equivalent to 9.5 that occurred at Valdivia in Chile during 1960. This earthquake is known to kill 1700 people and the following tsunami displacing more than 2 million people. Over the last decade hundreds of earthquakes have left hundreds of thousands dead, and millions homeless. Lets take a look at the worlds deadliest catastrophic earth shakes human lives has faced since last decade.
1. Sumatra, Indonesia
Magnitude: 9.1, Dec. 26, 2004
The day after the Christmas in the year 2004 proved to be a sorrowful day for the people residing in fourteen countries including India and Sumatra. If the magnitude is considered, it is the third most dangerous earthquake on earth and death toll was around 227,898. The earthquake not only devastated the land but also altered the waters of the Pacific Ocean. This resulted in dangerous tsunamis which struck Sumatra hence increasing the death toll. The disaster mainly affected Indonesia followed by India, Sri Lanka as well as Thailand. There were many aftershocks seen near the epicenter and even in Andaman and Nicobar Islands in the following days. It is known that after a few days of the earthquake, a volcanic eruption took place in the Andaman and this earthquake is blamed for it to happen.
One of the most devastating thing about an earthquake is that if happening near water bodies, it force the water to form tides and waves, and thus leading to another havoc called Tsunami. Similar thing happened at Sumatra Islands. The earthquake gave rise to a Tsunami wave and traversed to regions as far as Sri Lanka.
2. Islamabad, Pakistan.
Magnitude: 7.8, Oct.8, 2005.
The sudden earthquake struck the mountains of northern Pakistan on Oct. 8, 2005, leaving 80,000 people dead. The temblor flattened entire villages of mud-brick homes and triggered landslides in the Kashmir region of the nation. The quake was centered about 60 miles northeast of the capital of Islamabad in Pakistan. This was a major set back for the developing nation.
3. Java Island, Indonesia
Magnitude: 6.3, May 26, 2006
A magnitude-6.3 quake hit Indonesia’s heavily populated Java Island killing more than 5,700 people. About 650,000 people were displaced by the disaster and more than 30,000 were injured. More than 135,000 houses were reduced to rubble.
4. Lima, Peru
Magnitude: 8.0, Aug.15, 2007
This catastrophic earthquake was felt nearly 100 miles away from its epicenter off the coast of Peru on Aug. 15, 2007. More than 500 people were killed. The temblor devastated cities of adobe and brick in Peru’s southern desert, where the center of destruction was located in the city of Ica and nearby port of Pisco, about 125 miles southeast of the capital, Lima. The uproar left thousand of people stranded.
5. Sichuan Province, China
Magnitude: 7.9, May 12, 2008
This is Chnia’s worst natural disaster in a generation, where nearly 90,000 were killed when a magnitude-7.9 quake struck at the Sichuan province in the central part of the nation on May 12, 2008. About 5 million were left homeless in the three hardest-hit provinces and the quake caused more than $122 billion in direct economic losses. This had striking fear in the Government audits.
6. Port-au-Prince, Haiti
Magnitude: 7.9, Jan 12, 2010
The sudden shivering and trembling of ground in Haiti on 12 Jan in the year 2010 resulted into a catastrophic earthquake. The damage due to this earthquake was very high. Not only did people lose their lives but many were injured and many lost their houses and were displaced. The estimated death toll was 222,570. The epicenter of the earthquake was Leogane. As many of you might be aware that Haiti is among the poorest countries in the world and have a history of some of the deadliest earthquakes recorded. Not only the country is vulnerable to earthquakes but other natural disasters like tropical cyclones have frequently damaged the country. The quake left 1.5 million homeless. Five years later, many people still live in tent cities that sprung up after the disaster. There were eight aftershocks after the main earthquake came. Two weeks later due to the earthquake a tsunami was recorded.
7. Bio Bio, Chile
Magnitude- 8.8, Date- February 27, 2010
One of the worst days in the history of the highly earthquake prone zone of Chile, this quake happened to take the lives of more than 500 people. The tsunami accompanied by this quake added to the affects by displacing hundreds of thousands of people of which, about 50 are still missing. The number of injured people reached a level of 12,000, thus making one of the worst earthquakes of the human history. A huge loss of capital was recorded after the course of these vibrations and waves.
8. Sendai, Japan
Magnitude- 9.0, Date- March 11, 2011
Who can even forget the earthquakes that caused Tsunami, and caused the failure of the thermal plants in Japan, thus making the environment of that region, prone to the harmful radiations of Uranium and Thorium? This incident happened just a few years back., this earthquake is said to be one of the worst quakes of the history. Japan doesn’t has much land but is rich in knowledge and technology and the incident made Japan defy of many thousand brainy minds. The catastrophe triggered a tsunami as high as 90 feet in some areas. More than 2,600 are still listed as missing four years after the disaster, which washed away entire towns and communities along the nation’s northeast coast. The earthquake was the largest ever to strike Japan. Despite of suffering such a huge loss, the government and people came together to diminish the affects of this earthquake cum tsunami.
9. Wenping, China
Magnitude: 6.2, Aug 03, 2014
A magnitude-6.2 earthquake left more than 700 dead near Wenping, China on Aug. 3, 2014. The strong tremor shook China immensely and struck the remote, mountainous part of China’s southwest. More than 12,000 homes were toppled and nearly 2,000 people were injured. The epicenter was in Ludian County, in the city of Zhaotong in southwest Yunnan province which is a known earthquake belt. It was the strongest quake to hit the province in 14 years and its effects are still not completely eradicated till date.
10. Nepal Earthquake
Magnitude: 7.8, April 25, 2015
More than 8,000 people were killed on April 25, 2015, after a magnitude of 7.8 quake hit Nepal. More than a dozen died after an avalanche on Mount Everest, the world’s highest mountain above sea level. Deaths were also reported in neighboring countries of India, Tibet and Bangladesh. The United Nations estimated 8 million people were affected. Less than a month later on May 12, 2015, another strong quake of magnitude-7.3 again struck Nepal, killing dozens more. Combined, the April and May quakes marked the deadliest disaster on record in the Himalayan nation. The after effects are yet to be recovered from and this is one of the most deadliest earthquake harming and rupturing the entire nation.
Image: Peru hit by Earthquake on Aug.2007
Image: Nepal jolted in 2015 by the deadly earthquake
Image: Lost in this world during Haiti earthquake in 2010
Image: Japan hit by a massive earthquake in 2011
Image: Tsunami aftereffects following earthquake in Indonesia