The Earth has a long history of earthquakes that devastated entire civilizations. The most recent one that comes to mind are the two earthquakes that devastated Nepal, has not only shaken up Nepal but also some of its neighboring countries. The death toll of the horrific Earthquake was 7,040 people after the initial Earthquake on 25 April 2015. Some of the historic temples of Nepal and several thousands of homes were ruined in the earthquake. It is also reported that around 65 people have died additionally in Nepal, due to the second earthquake which struck on May 12 2015. The magnitude of the earthquake was a 7.3 on the Richter scale and the number of injured people now stands at almost 1926, according to the home ministry of Nepal. Below you can find some enlightening and important facts on Earthquakes that you most probably didn’t know:
15 Unknown Facts about Earthquakes
- The destruction which is caused by an earthquake impacts on average about 8000 people every year and has caused almost 13 million deaths in the past 4000 years.
- An earthquake that occurred in A.D. 1201 in the eastern region of the Mediterranean has been categorized as possibly the worst earthquake in earth’s history and it claimed almost one million lives.
- According to the Japanese mythology, these earthquakes are the doings of a giant catfish known as Namazu.
- In 2004 the Indian Ocean Earthquake itself provided sufficient energy to power the entirety of businesses and homes within the United States for about 3 days.
- The earthquakes last on average for about 1 minute.
- Geological faults are the main instigators or earthquakes; however they can also be caused by nuclear testing, landslides, volcanic activity and also mine tests.
- The northern hemisphere hosts any more earthquakes that the southern hemisphere.
- The worst ever avalanche which was a result of an earthquake happened in Peru in 1070. In it a 250 foot high wave of ice, rock and mud fell down from the mountains in Huascaran at an incredible speed of 250 miles per hour. The avalanche carried with it entire villages and killed more than 18000 people.
- The MMS or the moment magnitude scale has substituted the Richter scale, which was developed in the 1930s, to detect the size of earthquakes in terms of the energy it released.
- The worst landslide on earth was caused by an earthquake which occurred in 1920. This happened in the Kansu provi*nce or China and the landslide killed almost 200000 people.
- The highest ever tsunami which was caused by an earthquake happened in Japan in 1771 when a tsunami 278 feet in height struck the Island of Ishigaki.
- The tectonic plates beneath us shift less than 17 centimeters. However even if the tectonic plates shift about 20 cm it is enough to set off a major earthquake in the region. An example of this is the 1995 earthquake in Kobe which measured a 6.9.
- Almost 2000 years ago, one Chinese astronomer by the name of Zhang Heng invented the first ever earthquake detector in the world. The machine could detect earthquakes up to 600 kilometers away.
- Scientists believe that the Animals can detect the small weak tremors before the actual earthquake. Others think that the electrical signals built by the shifting of the rocks are picked up by the Animals.
- Bodies of water may smell strange before an earthquake due to the release of natural gasses underground. The temperature of water also rises.
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