On the night of April 18, 1906, the whole town was woken by erratic shaking. Although the earthquake lasted under a measly minute, it caused significant damage. Many fires started all throughout the city; San Francisco burned in turmoil. In the early 1900’s, Theodore Roosevelt took office after McKinley was assassinated. Unfortunately, that wasn’t the only turmoil at the time.
This devastating earthquake left the city and United States in a financial crisis. Although the 1906 earthquake was one of the worst natural disasters in U.S. history, the city of San Francisco was able to overcome these substantial physical, social and economic impacts it had. The physical damage done to San Francisco due to the earthquake was extensive. The earthquake caused gas lines to rupture and chimneys to collapse which resulted in perhaps the greatest devastation from the earthquake, the fires. About fifty fires broke out around the city that in combination with the earthquake caused the destruction of about 28,000 buildings (The Great San Francisco Earthquake: One of America's Worst Urban Disasters.
Tornadoes in the Midwest, hurricanes along the Gulf Coast or earthquakes in California are all hazards that residents in those regions accept and live with. This paper will examine one hazard that caused a disaster requiring a response from emergency management personnel. Specifically, the hazard more closely examined here is an earthquake. With the recent twenty year anniversary covered by many media outlets, the January 17, 1994, Northridge, California earthquake to date is the most expensive earthquake in American history. Earthquakes Before examining the Northridge event, understanding the naturally occurring hazard that is an earthquake will help to better understand exactly what happened and why it was such an important geological event.
Tsunamis are one of the most dangerous natural disasters known to mankind that cause devastating effects on society. Despite the fact that tsunamis are not frequent phenomena, it causes huge causalities once it occurs. The number of deaths could reach 420 thousand a year, accompanied by the destruction of many costal residences. But despite the fact that tsunami damages are inevitable, it can be reduced. The word tsunami was originated from the Japanese words “Tsu” meaning “harbor”, and “Nami” meaning “wave”.
If severe then the aftershocks that follow can bring down structures that were badly damaged from the major quake. This whole process is repetitious, taking place along faults with powerful quakes once every two years and moderate quakes averaging 40 per year. Scientists’ estimate more than 8,000 minor quakes take place each day but do not cause any damage. Fault lines are not limited to the land. They do run under the water and the str... ... middle of paper ... ...ds of lives.
The earthquake and fires greatly exposed the poorly constructed buildings of previous years. The destruction of San Francisco from the earthquake and fires of 1906 allowed for a newly reconstructed city with bigger and better buildings that attracted more business thereafter. At 5:12 in the morning of Wednesday, April 18, 1906 an earthquake struck the City of San Francisco according to seismograph records. People remembered this event as especially violent and everyone within the vicinity woke up to white dust in the air from fallen debris. As remembered by a bystander of the event, “I was awakened by a very severe shock of earthquake.
Imagine if a 9.0 earthquake struck the West Coast today, resulting in a giant tsunami. Coastal towns would be washed away or completely isolated, and electricity would be lost (FOX5). There would be $70 billion in damage and people would only have 15 minutest to evacuate or move to higher ground resulting in 10,000 deaths (FOX5). This sounds like a plot for a scary movie, but this is actually a reality. The Oregon Coast in located on a subduction zone, which makes it very susceptible to major earthquakes and tsunamis.