1952 Severo-Kurilsk earthquake
The site of Severo-Kurilsk before the 1952 tsunami, seen from a helicopter in 2006. The site of the modern town, rebuilt at higher level, is not visible.
|UTC time||1952-11-04 16:58:30|
|Local date||November 5, 1952|
|Magnitude||9.0 Mw |
|Depth||21.6 km (13 mi)|
|Max. intensity||XI (Extreme) |
|Tsunami||18 m (59 ft) |
The 1952 Severo-Kurilsk earthquake struck off the coast of the Kamchatka Peninsula. The 9.0 Mw earthquake triggered a major tsunami that hit Severo-Kurilsk, Kuril Islands, Sakhalin Oblast, Russian SFSR, USSR, on 4 November 1952 at 16:58 (UTC). This led to the destruction of many settlements in Sakhalin Oblast and Kamchatka Oblast, while the main impact struck the town of Severo-Kurilsk. It was the sixth most powerful earthquake on record, and to date, the most powerful earthquake in Russian history.
The tsunami was generated 130 kilometers (81 mi) offshore Kamchatka, impacting Severo-Kurilsk with three waves about 15–18 meters (49–59 ft) high. After the earthquake the majority of the Severo-Kurilsk citizens fled to the surrounding hills, where they escaped the first wave. However, most of them returned to the town and were killed by the second wave. According to the authorities, out of a population of 6,000 people, 2,336 died. The survivors were evacuated to continental Russia. The settlement was then rebuilt in another location.
Earthquakes continue to happen in the area, including a M7.5 event that occurred at ~56km depth on 25 March 2020.
- "Сливное землетрясение (цунами) 1952 года" [The 1952 drainage earthquake (tsunami)]. Local history bulletin 4 (in Russian). Sakhalin Regional Museum of Local Lore and the Sakhalin Branch of the All-Russian Cultural Fund. 1991. Archived from the original on 20 April 2010. Retrieved 17 October 2020.
- Utsu, T. R. (2002), "A List of Deadly Earthquakes in the World: 1500–2000", International Handbook of Earthquake & Engineering Seismology, Part A, Volume 81A (First ed.), Academic Press, p. 706, ISBN 978-0124406520
- USGS (September 4, 2009), PAGER-CAT Earthquake Catalog, Version 2008_06.1, United States Geological Survey
- "M 9.0 - off the east coast of the Kamchatka Peninsula, Russia". earthquake.usgs.gov. Retrieved 2020-10-05.
- "1952 Kamchatka Tsunami". Western States Seismic Policy Council. Retrieved 2020-10-05.
- MacInnes, B. T.; Weiss, R.; Bourgeois, J.; Pinegina, T. K. (2010), "Slip Distribution of the 1952 Kamchatka Great Earthquake Based on Near-Field Tsunami Deposits and Historical Records" (PDF), Bulletin of the Seismological Society of America, 100 (4): 1695–1709, Bibcode:2010BuSSA.100.1695M, doi:10.1785/0120090376