The world has been shook by many earthquakes in its long years of existence, but even though you may believe that the biggest earthquake in the world was that of Japan which measured 9.0 on the Richter scale, that’s not really true.
Biggest Earthquakes In The World
There are many others that took place and below we’re going to take a closer look at the top 10 largest earthquakes in the world in history:
10. Assam, Tibet, 1950 (Magnitude 8.6)
Across Assam and eastern Tibet, around fifteen hundred people were killed because of this earthquake, with sand volcanoes, large landslides and ground cracks hitting the area. It was so big, that it was felt even in China’s Sichuan province and Calcutta (India). As a result of it, the massive Himalaya Mountains were formed.
9. Northern Sumatra, Indonesia, 2005 (Magnitude 8.6)
The earthquake in N. Sumatra has caused the death of more than one thousand people and injured thousands others, mostly from Nias, Indonesia. The earthquake caused a rupture below the Indian Ocean’s surface, where the Eurasian plate is pushed by the Indo-Australian Plate.
8. Rat Islands, Alaska, 1965 (Magnitude 8.7)
Even though it triggered a tsunami of over ten meters, this quake didn’t cause too much damage. The tsunami however was reported in the island of Hawaii and then it eventually spread to Japan. Its aftermaths were split asphalt runways and cracked wood buildings with no major damages.
7. Off the Coast of Ecuador, 1906 (Magnitude 8.8)
This 8.8 magnitude monster is responsible for a very powerful tsunami that killed between five hundred and fifteen hundred people. It occurred along the boundary between the S. American Plate and the Nazca plate.
6. Offshore Maule, Chile, 2010 (Magnitude 8.8)
The Chile earthquake was a massive one and it killed five hundred people and left more than eight hundred thousand displaced. In total, more than 1,8 million people were affected and the economic damages left behind totaled thirty billion dollars.
5. Kamchatka Peninsula, Russia, 1952 (Magnitude 9.0)
The Russian earthquake in Kamchatka was the first magnitude nine of its kind and it generated a forty-three-foot tsunami that caused some serious damage to the Crescent City, Calif. While miraculously no one has lost their life because of it, the total property damages reported amounted to one million dollars.
4. Near the East Coast of Honshu, Japan 2011 (Magnitude 9.0)
March 11th is a fatidic day that everyone in modern times sadly remembers. It’s the day when a massive tsunami has struck Japan and killed around twenty-nine thousand people. In the process, Fukushima’s nuclear reactors were also affected and some of them even blew up, causing the area to be engulfed in radioactive material. This is the single largest earthquake of its kind that has ever hit Japan.
3. Off the West Coast of Northern Sumatra, 2004 (Magnitude 9.1)
The Sumatra earthquake is the largest in the world since nineteen sixty-four and because of its impact, more than 227 thousand people have lost their lives, while 1.7 million have been displaced. The number of casualties is the highest in history, with some reports saying that the actual number of lives lost is greater.
2. Prince William Sound, Alaska, 1964 (Magnitude 9.2)
With a magnitude of 9.2 on the Richter scale, this earthquake is responsible for the loss of one hundred and twenty-eight lives and around 311 million dollars in property loss. The damage from the earthquake was severe and even cities 120 km from its epicenter were heavily affected. Time-wise, the earthquake lasted for three minutes and as a result of that, massive slides occurred in the downtown business section; electrical, telephone, sewer, gas and water mains systems were completely disrupted.
1. Chile, 1960 (Magnitude 9.5)
The largest earthquake ever recorded took place in Chile in nineteen sixty. One thousand six hundred and fifty-five people have lost their lives and millions of others were left homeless. In terms of damage, S. Chile suffered losses of more than half a billion dollars. Because of its immense magnitude, the quake caused a great tsunami that killed thirty two people in the Philippines, one hundred and thirty eight people in Japan and sixty one people in Hawaii.
As you can see, these are the Top 10 the biggest earthquake in the world in history. Millions of people have lost their lives and billions of dollars of property have been lost. On top of that, recent earthquakes like the one that happened in Japan still affects those living near the Fukushima nuclear plant.