Portal:India/Today's selected article/July 22, 2006

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Devastation in Sumatra

The 2004 Indian Ocean earthquake, also known as the Sumatra-Andaman earthquake, was an undersea earthquake that occurred at 00:58:53 UTC (07:58:53 local time) on December 26, 2004. The earthquake triggered a series of lethal tsunamis that spread throughout the Indian Ocean, killing large numbers of people and devastating coastal communities across South and South East Asia, including parts of Indonesia, Sri Lanka, India, Thailand and elsewhere. The number of casualties were 186,983 dead and 42,883 missing, for a total of 229,866 affected. This catastrophe is one of the deadliest disasters in modern history and is known in Asia and in the international media as the Asian Tsunami, and also called the Boxing Day Tsunami. The magnitude of the earthquake has been upgraded to between 9.1 and 9.3 on the Richter scale. This earthquake was also reported to be the longest duration of faulting ever observed, lasting between 500 and 600 seconds, and it was large enough that it caused the entire planet to vibrate at least half an inch, or over a centimetre. The earthquake originated in the Indian Ocean just north of Simeulue island, off the western coast of northern Sumatra, Indonesia. The plight of the many affected people and countries prompted a widespread humanitarian response, with more than US$7 billion donated in aid for those affected. (more...)

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