Lists of earthquakes

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The following is a list of earthquake lists, and of top earthquakes by magnitude and fatalities.

Main lists[edit]

Lists of earthquakes by country[edit]

Largest earthquakes by magnitude[edit]

A pie chart comparing the seismic moment release of the three largest earthquakes for the hundred year period from 1906 to 2005 with that for all earthquakes of magnitudes <6, 6 to 7, 7 to 8 and >8 for the same period
Earthquakes of magnitude 8.0 and greater since 1900. The apparent 3D volumes of the bubbles are linearly proportional to their respective fatalities.[1]

Listed below are all known earthquakes measured or estimated to have a magnitude of 8.5 or above on the moment magnitude or Richter scales.

This list is biased towards recent years due to development and widespread deployment of seismometers. Also, records that were detailed enough to make magnitude estimates (est.) were not generally available before 1900.[2]

Date Location Name Magnitude
May 22, 1960 Valdivia, Chile 1960 Valdivia earthquake 9.5
March 27, 1964 Prince William Sound, Alaska, USA 1964 Alaska earthquake 9.2
December 26, 2004 Indian Ocean, Sumatra, Indonesia 2004 Indian Ocean earthquake 9.2
November 4, 1952 Kamchatka, Russian SFSR, Soviet Union 1952 Kamchatka earthquakes 9.0[3]
March 11, 2011 Pacific Ocean, Tōhoku region, Japan 2011 Tōhoku earthquake 9.0[4][5][6]
December 2, 1611 Pacific Ocean, Hokkaido, Japan 1611 Sanriku earthquake 8.9 (est.)
April 2, 1762 Chittagong, Bangladesh (then Kingdom of Mrauk U) 1762 Arakan earthquake ≦8.8 (est.)
November 25, 1833 Sumatra, Indonesia (then part of the Dutch East Indies) 1833 Sumatra earthquake 8.8–9.2 (est.)
January 31, 1906 Ecuador – Colombia 1906 Ecuador-Colombia earthquake 8.8
February 27, 2010 Bio-Bio, Chile 2010 Chile earthquake 8.8
January 26, 1700 Pacific Ocean, USA and Canada (then part of the British Empire) 1700 Cascadia earthquake 8.7 (est.)[7]
October 28, 1707 Pacific Ocean, Shikoku region, Japan 1707 Hōei earthquake 8.7 (est.)
July 8, 1730 Valparaiso, Chile (then part of the Spanish Empire) 1730 Valparaiso earthquake 8.7 (est.)[8]
November 1, 1755 Atlantic Ocean, Lisbon, Portugal 1755 Lisbon earthquake 8.7 (est.)[9]
February 4, 1965 Rat Islands, Alaska, USA 1965 Rat Islands earthquake 8.7
July 9, 869 Pacific Ocean, Tōhoku region, Japan 869 Sanriku earthquake 8.6 (est.)
October 28, 1746 Lima, Peru (then part of the Spanish Empire) 1746 Lima-Callao earthquake 8.6-8.8 (est.)
March 28, 1787 Oaxaca, Mexico (then part of the Spanish Empire) 1787 Mexico earthquake 8.6-8.7 (est.)
April 1, 1946 Aleutian Islands, Alaska, USA 1946 Aleutian Islands earthquake 8.6
August 15, 1950 Assam, India – Tibet, China 1950 Assam - Tibet earthquake 8.6
March 9, 1957 Andreanof Islands, Alaska, USA 1957 Andreanof Islands earthquake 8.6
March 28, 2005 Sumatra, Indonesia 2005 Sumatra earthquake 8.6
April 11, 2012 Indian Ocean, Sumatra, Indonesia 2012 Aceh earthquake 8.6
December 16, 1575 Valdivia, Chile (then part of the Spanish Empire) 1575 Valdivia earthquake 8.5 (est.)
November 24, 1604 Arica, Chile (then part of the Spanish Empire) 1604 Arica earthquake 8.5 (est.)
May 13, 1647 Santiago, Chile (then part of the Spanish Empire) 1647 Santiago earthquake 8.5 (est.)
May 24, 1751 Concepción, Chile (then part of the Spanish Empire) 1751 Concepción earthquake 8.5 (est.)
November 19, 1822 Valparaíso, Chile 1822 Valparaíso earthquake 8.5 (est.)
February 20, 1835 Concepción, Chile 1835 Concepción earthquake 8.5 (est.)
February 16, 1861 Sumatra, Indonesia 1861 Sumatra earthquake 8.5
August 13, 1868 Arica, Chile (then Peru) 1868 Arica earthquake 8.5–9.0 (est.)[10]
May 9, 1877 Iquique, Chile (then Peru) 1877 Iquique earthquake 8.5-9.0 (est.)
November 10, 1922 Atacama Region, Chile 1922 Vallenar earthquake 8.5[11]
February 1, 1938 Banda Sea, Indonesia (then part of the Dutch East Indies) 1938 Banda Sea earthquake 8.5
October 13, 1963 Kuril Islands, Russia (USSR) 1963 Kuril Islands earthquake 8.5[12]
September 12, 2007 Sumatra, Indonesia 2007 Sumatra earthquakes 8.5
October 20, 1687 Lima, Peru (then part of the Spanish Empire) 1687 Peru earthquake 8.4-8.7 (est.)
October 17, 1737 Kamchatka, Russia 1737 Kamchatka earthquakes 8.3-9.0(est.)
August 3, 1361 Pacific Ocean, Shikoku region, Japan 1361 Shōhei earthquake 8.2-8.5(est.)
June 15, 1896 Pacific Ocean, Tōhoku region, Japan 1896 Sanriku earthquake 8.2-8.5(est.)


Deadliest earthquakes on record[edit]

Deadliest earthquakes[13]
Rank Name Date Location Fatalities Magnitude Notes
1 "Shaanxi" January 23, 1556 Shaanxi, China 820,000–830,000 (est.)[14] 8.0 (est.) Estimated death toll in Shaanxi, China.
2 "Haiyuan" December 16, 1920 NingxiaGansu, China 273,400[15][16] 7.8 Major fractures, landslides.
3 "Tangshan" July 28, 1976 Hebei, China 242,769[16][17] 7.8
4 "Antioch" May 21, 526 Antioch, Turkey (then Byzantine Empire) 240,000[18] 7.0 (est.)[19] Procopius (II.14.6), sources based on John of Ephesus.
5 "Indian Ocean" December 26, 2004 Indian Ocean, Sumatra, Indonesia 230,210+[20][21] 9.1–9.3 Deaths from earthquake and resulting tsunami.
6 "Aleppo" October 11, 1138 Aleppo, Syria 230,000 Unknown The figure of 230,000 dead is based on a historical conflation of this earthquake with earthquakes in November 1137 on the Jazira plain and the large seismic event of September 30, 1139 in the Azerbaijani city of Ganja. The first mention of a 230,000 death toll was by Ibn Taghribirdi in the fifteenth century.[22]
7 "Haiti" January 12, 2010 Haiti 100,000–316,000 7.0 Estimates vary from 316,000 (unsubstantiated Haitian government claim) to 222,570 (United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs estimate)[23] to 158,000 (report published in the Medicine, Conflict and Survival) to between 85,000 and 46,000 (unpublished LTL Strategies report commissioned by USAID).[24][25]
8 "Damghan" December 22, 856 Damghan, Iran 200,000 (est.) 7.9 (est.)
9 "Ardabil" March 22, 893 Ardabil, Iran 150,000 (est.) Unknown Reports probably relate to the 893 Dvin earthquake, due to misreading of the Arabic word for Dvin, 'Dabil' as 'Ardabil'.[26] This is regarded as a 'fake earthquake'.[27]
10 "Aleppo" November 29, 533 Syria 130,000[28]  ?
11 "Messina" December 28, 1908 Messina, Italy 123,000[29] 7.1 On December 28, 1908 from about 5:20 to 5:21 am an earthquake of 7.1 on the moment magnitude scale occurred centered on Messina, a city in Sicily, Italy. Reggio Calabria on the Italian mainland also suffered heavy damage. The ground shook for some 30 to 40 seconds, and the destruction was felt within a 300 km radius. Moments after the earthquake, a 40 feet (12 m) tsunami struck nearby coasts causing even more devastation. 93% of structures in Messina were destroyed and some 70,000 residents were killed. Rescuers searched through the rubble for weeks, and whole families were still being pulled out alive days later, but thousands remained buried there. Buildings in the area had not been constructed for earthquake resistance, having heavy roofs and vulnerable foundations.
12 "Ashgabat" October 6, 1948 Ashgabat, Turkmen SSR (modern-day Turkmenistan) 110,000[30] 7.3
13 "Great Kantō" September 1, 1923 Kantō region, Japan 105,385[31] 7.9 An earthquake which struck the Kantō plain on the Japanese main island of Honshū at 11:58 on the morning of September 1, 1923. Varied accounts hold that the duration of the earthquake was between 4 and 10 minutes. The quake had an epicenter deep beneath Izu Ōshima Island in Sagami Bay. It devastated Tokyo, the port city of Yokohama, surrounding prefectures of Chiba, Kanagawa, and Shizuoka, and caused widespread damage throughout the Kantō region.[32] The power and intensity of the earthquake is easy to underestimate, but the 1923 earthquake managed to move the 93-ton Great Buddha statue at Kamakura. The statue slid forward almost two feet.[33] Casualty estimates range from about 100,000 to 142,800 deaths, the latter figure including approximately 40,000 who went missing and were presumed dead.
14 "Chihli" September 27, 1290 Ningcheng, China 100,000[34] 6.8
14 "Kashmir" October 8, 2005 Muzaffarabad, Pakistan 100,000[35] 7.6

Property damages caused by earthquake[edit]

Rank Name Magnitude Property damages
1 2011 Tōhoku earthquake, Japan 9.0[6] $235 billion[36][37]
2 1995 Great Hanshin earthquake, Japan 6.9 $100 billion
3 2008 Sichuan earthquake, China 8.0 $75 billion
4 2011 Christchurch earthquake, New Zealand 6.3[38] $40 billion [39]
5 2010 Chile earthquake, Chile 8.8[40] $15–30 billion[40]
6 1994 Northridge earthquake, United States 6.7 $20 billion
7 2012 Emilia earthquakes, Italy 6.1[41] $13.2 billion
8 1989 Loma Prieta earthquake, United States ~7.0; 6.9-7.1 reported[42] $11 billion
9 1999 921 earthquake, Taiwan 7.6 $10 billion
10 1906 San Francisco earthquake, United States 7.7 to 7.9 (est.)[41] $9.5 billion ($400 million 1906 value[41])

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ USGS: Magnitude 8 and Greater Earthquakes Since 1900
  2. ^ Weeks, Linton (March 13, 2011). "The Recorded History Of Quakes Is A Long One". National Public Radio. 
  3. ^ "Historic Earthquakes – Kamchatka." U.S. Geological Survey, October 26, 2009.
  4. ^ "New USGS number puts Japan quake at 4th largest". CBS News. 14 March 2011. Retrieved 15 March 2011. 
  5. ^ Reilly, Michael (March 11, 2011). "Japan's quake updated to magnitude 9.0". New Scientist. Retrieved March 11, 2011.
  6. ^ a b USGS analysis as of March 12, 2011
  7. ^ Atwater, B.F.; Musumi-Rokkaku S., Satake K., Tsuji Y., Ueda K. & Yamaguchi D.K. (2005). "The Orphan Tsunami of 1700". Professional Paper 1707. USGS. p. 98. Retrieved March 13, 2011. 
  8. ^ "Historic World Earthquakes." U.S. Geological Survey, November 23, 2009.
  9. ^ "Historic Earthquakes – Lisbon, Portugal." U.S. Geological Survey, October 26, 2009.
  10. ^ "Historic Earthquakes – Arica." U.S. Geological Survey, October 21, 2009.
  11. ^ "Historic Earthquakes – Chile-Argentina Border." U.S. Geological Survey, October 26, 2009.
  12. ^ "Magnitude 8 and Greater Earthquakes Since 1900." U.S. Geological Survey, March 7, 2010
  13. ^ "Earthquakes with 50,000 or More Deaths". Earthquake.usgs.gov. Retrieved February 12, 2011. 
  14. ^ International Association of Engineering Geology International Congress. Proceedings. [1990] (1990). ISBN 90-6191-664-X.
  15. ^ Utsu, T. "Search Page". Catalog of Damaging Earthquakes in the World (Through 2008). Retrieved June 3, 2010. 
  16. ^ a b http://news.xinhuanet.com/english2010/china/2010-12/16/c_13652388.htm
  17. ^ "Earthquakes with 50,000 or More Deaths". USGS. Retrieved March 17, 2012. 
  18. ^ "Annals 48, 3, 2005+app1" (PDF). Retrieved February 12, 2011. 
  19. ^ National Geophysical Data Center. "Comments for the Significant Earthquake". Retrieved September 22, 2011. 
  20. ^ If the death toll in Myanmar was 400–600 as claimed by dissident groups there, rather than just 61 or 90, more than 230,000 people would have perished in total from the tsunami.
  21. ^ "Myanmar is withholding true casualties figures, says Thai priest". AsiaNews.it. January 4, 2005. Archived from the original on October 9, 2006. Retrieved February 12, 2011. "A missioner in Ranong, a town on the border between Thailand and Myanmar, says locals talk about 600 victims. Burmese political dissidents say the same." 
  22. ^ Ambraseys, Nicholas N., "The 12th century seismic paroxysm in the Middle East: a historical perspective" (PDF), Annals of Geophysics, Vol. 47, N. 2/3, April/June 2004, p. 743.
  23. ^ Haiti Dominates Earthquake Fatalities in 2010 (January 11, 2011), U.S. Geological Survey.
  24. ^ Maura R. O'Connor, [Two Years Later, Haitian Earthquake Death Toll in Dispute], Columbia Journalism Review (January 12, 2012).
  25. ^ Report challenges Haiti earthquake death toll (June 1, 2011), BBC.
  26. ^ Ambraseys, N.N.; Melville, C.P. (2005). A History of Persian Earthquakes. Cambridge Earth Science. Cambridge University Press. p. 175. ISBN 978-0-521-02187-6. Retrieved September 29, 2011. 
  27. ^ Gupta, H. (2011). Encyclopedia of Solid Earth Geophysics. Encyclopedia of Earth Sciences (2 ed.). Springer. p. 566. ISBN 978-90-481-8701-0. 
  28. ^ Paula Dunbar. "Significant Earthquake". Ngdc.noaa.gov. Retrieved 2014-02-13. 
  29. ^ The world's worst natural disasters Calamities of the 20th and 21st centuries CBC News'.' Retrieved October 29, 2010.
  30. ^ Dilip Hiro, Inside Central Asia: A Political and Cultural History of Uzbekistan, Turkmenistan, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, Turkey, and Iran (Penguin, 2009); Keith Smith, Environmental Hazards: Assessing Risk and Reducing Disaster (6th ed., Routledge 2013), p. 140.
  31. ^ http://earthquake.usgs.gov/learn/today/index.php?month=9&day=1&submit=View+Date
  32. ^ Hammer, Joshua. (2006). Yokohama Burning: the Deadly 1923 Earthquake and Fire that Helped Forge the Path to World War II, p. 278, citing Francis Hawks, (1856). Narrative of the Expedition of an American Squadron to the China Seas and Japan Performed in the Years 1852, 1853 and 1854 under the Command of Commodore M.C. Perry, United States Navy, Washington: A.O.P. Nicholson by order of Congress, 1856; originally published in Senate Executive Documents, No. 34 of 33rd Congress, 2nd Session.
  33. ^ Great Buddha: blog
  34. ^ NGDC. "Comments for the Significant Earthquake". Retrieved 29 October 2010. 
  35. ^ "Construction of Earthquake Resistant Buildings and Infrastructure Implementing Seismic Design and Building Code in Northern Pakistan 2005 Earthquake Affected Area". Centre for Promoting Ideas, USA. Retrieved 2013-04-08. "Its main impact zone was in AJK and Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa province of Pakistan. An area (mostly mountainous and rugged terrain) of about 30,000 km2 [11,600 sq mi] approximately was affected by this earthquake. It damaged about 6,440 km [4,000 mi] of roads. It damaged 50-70% of services including power, water and sanitation, etc. Approximately 400,153 houses, 6,298 schools and 796 health facilities were damaged or destroyed (UN 2006). Approximately 100,000 people were dead, around 138,000 people were seriously injured and 3.5 million people were displaced in this earthquake." 
  36. ^ Zhang, Bo. "Top 5 Most Expensive Natural Disasters in History". AccuWeather.com. News & Video. Archived from the original on 12 April 2011. Retrieved 29 March 2011. 
  37. ^ Victoria Kim (21 March 2011). "Japan damage could reach $235 billion, World Bank estimates". Los Angeles Times. Archived from the original on 12 April 2011. Retrieved 21 March 2011. 
  38. ^ "New Zealand Earthquake Report". GeoNet (Earthquake Commission and GNS Science). February 22, 2011. 
  39. ^ Wikipedia Article (February 22, 2011). "New economist estimates place Christchurch rebuild at $40 billion". Bloomberg L.P. Retrieved May 3, 2013. 
  40. ^ a b "Events and Developments (P. 3, "Calendar of events 2010: February 27")". Yearbook (UNEP). 2011. 
  41. ^ a b c "Where can I learn more about the 1906 Earthquake?". Berkeley Seismological Lab. December 11, 2011. 
  42. ^ Stoffer, Philip W., "The San Andreas Fault In The San Francisco Bay Area, California: A Geology Fieldtrip Guidebook To Selected Stops On Public Lands" (Introduction, p. 5), USGS, 2005.

External links[edit]