Lists of earthquakes

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

Lists by period[edit]

Lists by country[edit]

Lists by region[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 magnitude scale.

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]

Rank Date Location Event Magnitude
1 May 22, 1960 Valdivia, Chile 1960 Valdivia earthquake 9.4–9.6
2 March 27, 1964 Prince William Sound, Alaska, United States 1964 Alaska earthquake 9.2
3 December 26, 2004 Indian Ocean, Sumatra, Indonesia 2004 Indian Ocean earthquake 9.1–9.3
4 March 11, 2011 Pacific Ocean, Tōhoku region, Japan 2011 Tōhoku earthquake 9.1[3]
5 November 4, 1952 Kamchatka, Russian SFSR, Soviet Union 1952 Kamchatka earthquakes 9.0[4]
6 August 13, 1868 Arica, Chile (then Peru) 1868 Arica earthquake 8.5–9.0 (est.)
7 January 26, 1700 Pacific Ocean, USA and Canada (then claimed by the Spanish Empire and the British Empire) 1700 Cascadia earthquake 8.7–9.2 (est.)
8 July 9, 869 Pacific Ocean, Tōhoku region, Japan 869 Sanriku earthquake 8.9 (est.)
9 April 2, 1762 Chittagong, Bangladesh (then Kingdom of Mrauk U) 1762 Arakan earthquake 8.8 (est.)
10 November 25, 1833 Sumatra, Indonesia (then part of the Dutch East Indies) 1833 Sumatra earthquake 8.8 (est.)
11 January 31, 1906 Ecuador – Colombia 1906 Ecuador–Colombia earthquake 8.8[5]
12 February 27, 2010 Offshore Maule, Chile 2010 Chile earthquake 8.8[5]
13 August 15, 1950 Assam, India – Tibet, China 1950 Assam–Tibet earthquake 8.7
14 October 28, 1707 Pacific Ocean, Shikoku region, Japan 1707 Hōei earthquake 8.7–9.3 (est.)
15 July 8, 1730 Valparaiso, Chile (then part of the Spanish Empire) 1730 Valparaiso earthquake 8.7 (est.)[6]
16 November 1, 1755 Atlantic Ocean, Lisbon, Portugal 1755 Lisbon earthquake 8.5–9.0
17 February 4, 1965 Rat Islands, Alaska, United States 1965 Rat Islands earthquake 8.7
18 October 28, 1746 Lima, Peru (then part of the Spanish Empire) 1746 Lima–Callao earthquake 8.6 (est.)
19 March 28, 1787 Oaxaca, Mexico (then part of the Spanish Empire) 1787 Mexico earthquake 8.6 (est.)
20 March 9, 1957 Andreanof Islands, Alaska, United States 1957 Andreanof Islands earthquake 8.6[5]
21 March 28, 2005 Sumatra, Indonesia 2005 Nias–Simeulue earthquake 8.6[5]
22 April 11, 2012 Indian Ocean, Sumatra, Indonesia 2012 Aceh earthquake 8.6
23 December 16, 1575 Valdivia, Chile (then part of the Spanish Empire) 1575 Valdivia earthquake 8.5 (est.)
24 November 24, 1604 Arica, Chile (then part of the Spanish Empire) 1604 Arica earthquake 8.5 (est.)
25 May 13, 1647 Santiago, Chile (then part of the Spanish Empire) 1647 Santiago earthquake 8.5 (est.)
26 May 24, 1751 Concepción, Chile (then part of the Spanish Empire) 1751 Concepción earthquake 8.5 (est.)
27 November 19, 1822 Valparaíso, Chile 1822 Valparaíso earthquake 8.5 (est.)
28 February 20, 1835 Concepción, Chile 1835 Concepción earthquake 8.5 (est.)
29 February 16, 1861 Sumatra, Indonesia 1861 Sumatra earthquake 8.5
30 May 9, 1877 Iquique, Chile (then Peru) 1877 Iquique earthquake 8.5 (est.)
31 November 10, 1922 Atacama Region, Chile 1922 Vallenar earthquake 8.5[7]
32 February 1, 1938 Banda Sea, Indonesia (then part of the Dutch East Indies) 1938 Banda Sea earthquake 8.5[5]
33 October 13, 1963 Kuril Islands, Russia (USSR) 1963 Kuril Islands earthquake 8.5[5]
34 September 12, 2007 Sumatra, Indonesia 2007 Sumatra earthquakes 8.5[5]
35 October 20, 1687 Lima, Peru (then part of the Spanish Empire) 1687 Peru earthquake 8.5 (est.)
36 October 17, 1737 Kamchatka, Russia 1737 Kamchatka earthquakes 8.5 (est.)
37 August 3, 1361 Pacific Ocean, Shikoku region, Japan 1361 Shōhei earthquake 8.5 (est.)
38 June 15, 1896 Pacific Ocean, Tōhoku region, Japan 1896 Sanriku earthquake 8.5 (est.)

Largest earthquakes by country[edit]

Country Magnitude Date More information
Afghanistan Afghanistan 7.5 26 October 2015 2015 Hindu Kush earthquake
Algeria Algeria 7.1 Mw 10 October 1980 1980 El Asnam earthquake
Armenia Armenia 6.8 Ms 7 December 1988 1988 Armenian earthquake
Argentina Argentina 8.0 Ms 27 October 1894 1894 San Juan earthquake
Australia Australia 7.2 29 April 1941 List of earthquakes in Australia
Austria Austria 5.5–6.0 15 September 1590 1590 Neulengbach earthquake
Azerbaijan Azerbaijan 6.9 25 November 1667 1667 Shamakhi earthquake
Bangladesh Bangladesh 8.8 2 April 1762 1762 Arakan earthquake
Belgium Belgium 6.3 18 September 1692 Epicentre: Verviers
Bolivia Bolivia 8.5 Ms 9 May 1877 1877 Iquique earthquake
Brazil Brazil 7.6 9 November 1963 [8]
Bulgaria Bulgaria 7.2[9] 4 April 1904 see List of earthquakes in Bulgaria
Canada Canada 8.7–9.2 26 January 1700 1700 Cascadia earthquake
Chile Chile 9.4–9.6 22 May 1960 1960 Valdivia earthquake
China China 8.6 15 August 1950 1950 Assam–Tibet earthquake
Colombia Colombia 8.8 31 January 1906 1906 Ecuador–Colombia earthquake
Costa Rica Costa Rica 7.7 22 April 1991 1991 Limon earthquake
Cuba Cuba 7.5–7.9 Ms[10][11] 21 June 1900 List of earthquakes in Cuba[10]
Cyprus Cyprus 7.0 11 May 1222 1222 Cyprus earthquake
Denmark Denmark 4.4[12][13][14] 19 February 2010 Jutland
Dominican Republic Dominican Republic 8.1 Ms 4 August 1946 1946 Dominican Republic earthquake
Ecuador Ecuador 8.8 31 January 1906 1906 Ecuador–Colombia earthquake
Egypt Egypt 7.3 22 November 1995 1995 Gulf of Aqaba earthquake
El Salvador El Salvador 8.0 19 December 1862 [15]
Estonia Estonia 4.7 25 October 1976 Osmussaare earthquake
Finland Finland 4.7 4 November 1898 Tornio, 66.2°N, 25.0°E[16]
France France 6.2 11 June 1909 1909 Provence earthquake
Germany Germany 6.1 18 February 1756 1756 Düren earthquake
Greece Greece 8.5+ 21 July 365 365 Crete earthquake
Guatemala Guatemala 7.7 (7.9 Ms) 6 August 1942 1942 Guatemala earthquake
Haiti Haiti 8.1 Ms 7 May 1842 1842 Cap-Haïtien earthquake
Honduras Honduras 7.3 Mw 28 May 2009 2009 Honduras earthquake
Hungary Hungary 6.3 ML 28 June 1763 1763 Komárom earthquake
Iceland Iceland 6.6 ML 17 June 2000 2000 Iceland earthquakes
India India 8.6 15 August 1950 1950 Assam–Tibet earthquake
Indonesia Indonesia 9.1–9.3 26 December 2004 2004 Boxing Day earthquake
Iran Iran 7.9 Ms 22 December 856 856 Damghan earthquake
Italy Italy 7.4 11 January 1693 1693 Sicily earthquake
Japan Japan 9.1[3] 11 March 2011 2011 Tōhoku earthquake
Kazakhstan Kazakhstan 7.7 3 January 1911 1911 Kebin earthquake
Lebanon Lebanon 7.5 9 July 551 551 Beirut earthquake
Republic of Macedonia Macedonia 6.1 26 July 1963 1963 Skopje earthquake
Malaysia Malaysia 6.2 26 July 1976 1976 Sabah earthquake
Mexico Mexico 8.6 28 March 1787 1787 Mexico earthquake
Mongolia Mongolia 8.4 23 July 1905 1905 Bolnai earthquake
Montenegro Montenegro 7.0 15 April 1979 1979 Montenegro earthquake
Morocco Morocco 6.3 24 February 2004 2004 Al Hoceima earthquake
Myanmar Myanmar 8.0 12 September 1946 [17]
Nepal Nepal 8.2 6 June 1505 1505 Lo Mustang earthquake
Netherlands Netherlands 5.3 (5.8 ML) 13 April 1992 1992 Roermond earthquake
New Zealand New Zealand 8.3 23 January 1855 1855 Wairarapa earthquake
Nicaragua Nicaragua 7.7 2 September 1992 1992 Nicaragua earthquake
North Korea North Korea 6.5 Ms[18] 19 March 1952
Norway Norway 6.2 21 February 2008 2008 Svalbard earthquake
Pakistan Pakistan 8.1 28 November 1945 1945 Balochistan earthquake
Panama Panama 7.5 18 July 1934
Peru Peru 8.6 28 October 1746 1746 Lima–Callao earthquake
Philippines Philippines 8.3 Ms and Mw 15 August 1918 1918 Celebes Sea earthquake
Poland Poland 5.8[19] 6 August 1983 near Głogów[20]
Portugal Portugal 8.5–9.0 1 November 1755 1755 Lisbon earthquake
Romania Romania 7.9 26 October 1802 1802 Vrancea earthquake
Russia Russia 9.0 4 November 1952 1952 Kamchatka earthquake
Samoa Samoa 8.5 26 June 1917 1917 Samoa earthquake
South Africa South Africa 6.3 29 September 1969
South Korea South Korea 5.4 12 September 2016 2016 Gyeongju earthquake
Spain Spain 7.1 Mb[21] (7.8 Mw)[22] 29 March 1954
Sweden Sweden 4.8 ML 14 July 1986 Skultorp, Västra Götaland[23]
Switzerland Switzerland 6.5 18 October 1356 1356 Basel earthquake
Taiwan Taiwan 7.6 (7.3 Ms) 21 September 1999 1999 Jiji earthquake
Thailand Thailand 6.1 5 May 2014 2014 Mae Lao earthquake
Turkey Turkey 7.8 Mw 27 December 1939 1939 Erzincan earthquake
United Kingdom United Kingdom 6.1 ML 7 June 1931 1931 Dogger Bank earthquake
United States United States 9.2 27 March 1964 1964 Alaska earthquake
Uzbekistan Uzbekistan 7.0 19 March 1984
Venezuela Venezuela 7.6 Mw 29 October 1900 [24]
Vietnam Vietnam 6.8 24 June 1983 Tuan Giao earthquake
Yemen Yemen 6.0 13 December 1982 1982 North Yemen earthquake

Costliest earthquakes[edit]

This is a list or major earthquakes by the dollar value of property (public and private) losses directly attributable to the earthquake. Wherever possible, indirect and socioeconomic losses are excluded. Please note that damage estimates for particular earthquakes may vary through time as more data becomes available.

Rank Event Location Magnitude Property damage
1 1995 Great Hanshin earthquake Japan 6.9 $200 billion[25]
2 2011 Tōhoku earthquake and tsunami Japan 9.1[3] $235 billion[26][27]
3 2008 Sichuan earthquake Sichuan, China 8.0 $86 billion[28]
4 1994 Northridge earthquake Los Angeles, United States 6.7 $13–44 billion
5 1980 Irpinia earthquake Italy 6.9[29] $15 billion[29]
6 1976 Tangshan earthquake Hebei, China 7.8 $10 billion[30]
7 2011 Christchurch earthquake South Island, New Zealand 6.3[31] $15–40 billion[32][33]
8 2004 Chūetsu earthquake Japan 6.8 $28 billion[29][34]
9 1999 İzmit earthquake Turkey 7.6 $20 billion[29]
10 2010 Chile earthquake Chile 8.8[35] $15–30 billion[35]
11 2012 Emilia earthquakes Italy 6.1[36] $15.8 billion[37]
12 1999 921 earthquake Taiwan 7.6 $10 billion
13 April 2015 Nepal earthquake Nepal 7.8 $10 billion to rebuild.[38]
14 1906 San Francisco earthquake San Francisco, United States 7.7 to 7.9 (est.)[36] $400 million[36]
15 1923 Great Kantō earthquake Tokyo, Japan 7.9 $600 million[29]
16 1989 Loma Prieta earthquake California, United States 6.9 $5.6–6 billion

Deadliest earthquakes[edit]

Deadliest earthquakes[39]
Rank Event Date Location Fatalities Magnitude Notes
1 1556 Shaanxi earthquake January 23, 1556 Shaanxi, China 820,000–830,000 [40] 8.0 Estimated death toll in Shaanxi, China.
2 1976 Tangshan earthquake July 28, 1976 Hebei, China 242,769[41][42] 7.8
3 1920 Haiyuan earthquake December 16, 1920 NingxiaGansu, China 273,400[41][43] 7.8 Major fractures, landslides.
4 526 Antioch earthquake May 21, 526 Antioch, Turkey (then Byzantine Empire) 240,000[44] 7.0 [45] Procopius (II.14.6), sources based on John of Ephesus.
5 2004 Indian Ocean earthquake December 26, 2004 Indian Ocean, Sumatra, Indonesia 230,210+[46] 9.1–9.3 Deaths from earthquake and resulting tsunami.
6 1138 Aleppo earthquake 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 on 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.[47]
7 2010 Haiti earthquake January 12, 2010 Haiti 100,000–316,000 7.0 Estimates vary from 316,000 (Haitian government) to 222,570 (UN OCHA estimate)[48] to 158,000 (Medicine, Conflict and Survival) to between 85,000 and 46,000 (report commissioned by USAID).[49][50]
8 1303 Hongdong earthquake September 25, 1303 Shanxi, China 200,000 [51] 8.0 Taiyuan and Pingyang were leveled.
9 856 Damghan earthquake December 22, 856 Damghan, Iran 200,000 7.9 Ms
10 893 Ardabil earthquake March 22, 893 Ardabil, Iran 150,000 Unknown Reports probably relate to the 893 Dvin earthquake, due to misreading of the Arabic word for Dvin, 'Dabil' as 'Ardabil'.[52] This is regarded as a 'fake earthquake'.[53]
11 533 Aleppo earthquake November 29, 533 Syria 130,000[54] Unknown
12 1908 Messina earthquake December 28, 1908 Messina, Italy 123,000[55] 7.1 The ground shook for 30 to 40 seconds around 5:20 am, and destruction occurred within a 300 km radius. 91% of structures in Messina were destroyed and ~70,000 residents died. Rescuers searched for weeks, and whole families were pulled out alive days later. A 40-foot (12 m) tsunami struck nearby coasts. Reggio Calabria on the Italian mainland also suffered heavy damage.
13 1948 Ashgabat earthquake October 6, 1948 Ashgabat, Turkmen SSR (modern-day Turkmenistan) 110,000[56] 7.3
14 1923 Great Kantō earthquake September 1, 1923 Kantō region, Japan 105,385[57] 7.9 This earthquake with an epicenter beneath Izu Ōshima Island in Sagami Bay, shook the Kantō plain on the Japanese island of Honshū at 11:58 am. Shaking duration reported between 4 and 10 minutes, devastating Tokyo, Yokohama, Chiba, Kanagawa, and Shizuoka.[58] Shaking slid the 93-ton Great Buddha statue at Kamakura almost two feet forward.[59] Casualty estimates range from 100,000 to 142,800, the latter figure including ~40,000 missing later presumed dead.
15 1290 Chihli earthquake September 27, 1290 Ningcheng, China 100,000[60] 6.8 Ms
16 2005 Kashmir earthquake October 8, 2005 Muzaffarabad, Pakistan 86,000–87,351 7.6 Mw Affecting an area (mostly rugged terrain) of about 30,000 km2 [11,600 sq mi], this earthquake damaged about 6,440 km [4,000 mi] of roads, and 50–70% of services, including power, water and sanitation. Approximately 400,153 houses, 6,298 schools and 796 health facilities were damaged or destroyed (UN 2006). Approximately 138,000 were seriously injured and 3.5 million people were displaced.

See also[edit]

References[edit]

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  4. ^ "Historic Earthquakes – Kamchatka." U.S. Geological Survey, October 26, 2009.
  5. ^ a b c d e f g "Magnitude 8 and Greater Earthquakes Since 1900." U.S. Geological Survey, March 7, 2010
  6. ^ "Historic World Earthquakes." U.S. Geological Survey, November 23, 2009.
  7. ^ "Historic Earthquakes – Chile-Argentina Border." U.S. Geological Survey, October 26, 2009.
  8. ^ M7.6 – Peru-Brazil border region, USGS 
  9. ^ The Kresna earthquake of 1904 in Bulgaria – Annals of Geophysics Journal (INGV), Vol 44, No 1, 2001
  10. ^ a b The 1766 Santiago earthquake killed more people, but the 1900 earthquake had a higher intensity. "14 Significant Earthquakes where (Year <= 2016 and Year >= 1000) and Country = CUBA and Region Code = 90". NCEI Significant Earthquake search. National Centers for Environmental Information, United States National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration. Archived from the original on 18 April 2016. 
  11. ^ It was 7.9 Ms according to McCann and Pennington, with its exact epicenter undetermined. McCann, William R. & Pennington, Wayne D. (1990). "Seismicity, large earthquakes and the margin of the Caribbean Plate". In Dengo, Gabriel & Case, James E. The Caribbean region. The Geology of North America. Boulder, Colorado: Geological Society of America. pp. 291–306, page 300. ISBN 978-0-8137-5212-9. 
  12. ^ "M4.4 – North Sea (4.4 magnitude earthquake 47 km from Thyborøn, Central Jutland, Denmark)". United States Geological Survey. 7 November 2014. Archived from the original on 18 April 2016. 
  13. ^ There was also a 4.4 Mw earthquake on 15 June 1985 in the Kattegat between Denmark and Sweden. "Denmark: Copenhagen: Saturday, June 15, 1985 Earthquake". Earthquake.Zone. ;"M4.4 – Sweden". United States Geological Survey. 
  14. ^ Earlier large earthquakes affecting Denmark occurred in Norway and Sweden. Voss, P. H.; Larsen, T. B.; Ottemöller, L.; Gregersen, S. (2009). "Earthquake in southern Sweden wakes up Denmark on 16 December 2008" (PDF). Geological Survey of Denmark and Greenland Bulletin. Geological Survey of Denmark and Greenland. 17: 11. 
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  19. ^ Some earthquakes in Poland before seismic measurement were apparently of greater intensity. See, in general, Guterch, B. (2009). "Seismicity in Poland in the light of historical records". Przegląd Geologiczny (in Polish). 57 (6): 513–520.  (English summary) and Pagaczewski, Janusz (1972). Catalogue of earthquakes in Poland in 1000-1970-years. Warsaw: Geophysical Institute, Polish Academy of Sciences. 
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  23. ^ USGS. "M 4.8 – Sweden". United States Geological Survey. 
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  46. ^ "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. 
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  48. ^ Haiti Dominates Earthquake Fatalities in 2010 (January 11, 2011), U.S. Geological Survey.
  49. ^ Maura R. O'Connor, [Two Years Later, Haitian Earthquake Death Toll in Dispute], Columbia Journalism Review (January 12, 2012).
  50. ^ Report challenges Haiti earthquake death toll (June 1, 2011), BBC.
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  58. ^ 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.
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External links[edit]