Earthquake Disasters Caused By The Tohoku Earthquake Essay

Earthquake Disasters Caused By The Tohoku Earthquake Essay

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TOHOKU, Japan, Friday, Mar. 11 -Yesterday, a 9.0 magnitude Earthquake struck the east of Tohoku, Japan. The epicentre of the earthquake was located approximately 72 km east of Tohoku (38.3 degrees North latitude and 142.4 degrees East longitude), or 130 km east of Sendai as shown by the X in figure 3 below. The focus of the earthquake was 24.4 km under the epicentre. The earthquake therefore caused a tsunami due to the displacing of water above the Pacific Plate. The earthquake and tsunami together have caused approximately 20,000 deaths, 6152 injuries and 2500 people missing. Approximately 90% of these deaths were by drowning. Approximately 140,000 people have been displaced and over 500,000 buildings and structures have been destroyed or damaged. The early warning system of Japan stopped many bullet trains, and many residents received texted warnings of the earthquake and tsunami on their mobile phones giving them time to evacuate. Figures 1 and 2 show exactly how destructive the tsunami caused by the Tohoku Earthquake was.


The earthquake negatively affected Japan in multiple ways. It disrupted electricity, water, food and gas supplies in Japan followed by transportation and telecommunication failure.
The earthquake also caused fires due to destruction of gas lines or electrical power, dam failure due to the tsunami causing overflow of water, landslides due to the earth movement and soil liquefaction. Floods and washing away of homes was caused by the rupture of the Fujinuma irrigation dam in Sukagawa. The flooding of the dam caused the drowning of many people and was a factor in the 90% deaths by drowning. Soil liquefaction is caused by applied strength from an earthquake and is where soil behaves as if it is liquid, and...


... middle of paper ...


...ge magnitude high damage earthquakes are common in this region. The 2011 Tohoku Earthquake was the most powerful in Japan’s history as no other Japanese earthquake has reached the 9.0 magnitude on the Richter scale. The second highest magnitude ever recorded in Japan was an 8.9 on the Richter scale; however that was the Jogan Sanriku earthquake that took place in the year 869.

Jinius Kangius, an eyewitness at the scene, told The Australian Times about his experience of the tsunami. “The tidal wave of the tsunami rushed in like it was eating up the city. I looked on from my 14th floor apartment and saw the water destroy every building in its path. The tsunami was relentless, just like the earthquake.” he said. Overall, this disaster can be summarised by the utter destruction shown in figure 9. The Tohoku earthquake and tsunami has wreaked havoc across Japan.


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