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26th of December, 1994 Earthquake

  • Date Submitted: 06/04/2011 11:59 PM
  • Flesch-Kincaid Score: 60.2 
  • Words: 257
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A tsunami is the great wave of seawater triggered by the sudden displacement of a large volume of water in the ocean. Once they start, tsunami waves radiate across oceans, far from their places of origin.

The earthquake on the 26th of December, 1994, was the result of the sliding of the Indian plate under the Burma plate. The megathrust earthquake occurred at 7.58am. The epicentre was off the west coast of Sumatra, Indonesia.   The earthquake had a magnitude of 9.0, making it the fourth largest in the world since 1900 and was felt in Sumatra, Andaman Islands, Nicobar Islands, Malaysia, Singapore, Thailand, Bangladesh, India as well as some other places. The earthquake caused a tsunami and killed people more than 2,000 kilometres away.

225 000 people died and more than one million people were displaced as a result of the tsunami. Houses, boats, hotels, shops, roads, railways and more were destroyed as the tsunami swept up the beaches. The tsunami may have been as high as 25 metres at some stage. The giant waves travelled the world and measurements in California say that it exceeded 40 centimetres in height there.

No warning was issued which resulted in the tsunami being a complete surprise for the nations that border the Indian Ocean. Many seismic networks recorded the earthquake but there were no tide gauges or wave sensors to provide proof that a tsunami had formed. There wasn’t even an established communication network or organizational infrastructure to pass a warning to any coastlines.


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