Earthquake : The Great Tohoku Earthquake

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Earthquake occurs abruptly and causes severs damage to people, property, landscape and more. A great mega-thrust earthquake, known as the Great Tohoku Earthquake has shaken Japan at 5:46:24 UTC on March 11, 2011. It caused a severe disaster, including tsunami and nuclear radiation exposure.. This mega-quake located at the latitude 38.297 degree North and longitude of 142.372 degree East, near the east coast of Honshu, Japan (USGS, 2013). The earthquake and tsunami waves caused widespread damage to many areas of Japan. People in Japan are still recovering from the damages. The Tohoku earthquake caused by the movement of the Pacific plate slides underneath the Eurasia plate at the rate of three inches per year, associated with Japan Trench (NOVA, 2013). There is a debate whether the plate involved with the Pacific plate was the fragment of the North America plate because this region divided into some micro-plates (Pletcher, 2013). The earthquake released the stress that built up between two plates. This subduction zone produced a magnitude 9.0 with the depth of 30 km. The upward movement of the fault was 30-40 meter. The slip over was 300 km long by 50 km in the down-dip direction (USGS, 2013). The displacement between two plates was relatively to 80 meters. The large foreshocks began over the previous two days with magnitude 7.2, approximately 25 miles from the epicenter. Many aftershocks had the magnitude larger than 6.0. The quake lasted for five to six minutes. The epicenter located about 80 miles (130km) to the east of Sendai (Pletcher, 2013). During Tohoku earthquake, the shallow fault shifted in one big piece instead of a small section at a time (Oskin, 2013b). The thrusting of the Pacific plate and the Eurasian plate prod... ... middle of paper ... ...r mega-thrust earthquake is unlikely to occur in Japan (USGS, 2013). Unusual animal behaviors (UAB) are an aspect for studying earthquakes. Many unusual animal behaviors were observed before Tohoku earthquakes occurred. A survey for UABs in pets and milk yield of dairy cows was studied by Hiroyuki et al. (2014). Dogs and cats have the advantage of smell receptors, olfactory cells, and ultrasound hearing that the human does not. Dog and cat owners observed restless behavior in their pets within few seconds, minutes, to even days before the earthquake. Some showed aggressive behavior such as diarrhea, vomiting, no appetite, etc. Cow in facilities within 340 km of the epicenter also showed a significant decrease of dairy milk yields a week before the earthquake (Hiroyuki et al., 2014). Careful observations of pet’s behaviors can help us in the earthquake predictions.
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