The earth consists of many natural water bodies and rock structures and formations. 71% of earth’s area is covered by water and rest 29% consists of land area. We have oceans, seas, lakes, rivers, mountains, valleys and many other natural things all around the world. They exist since billions of years on the earth and there are also many living creatures living in that.
The earthquake is the sudden movement under the surface of the earth and it results in seismic waves. The magnitude of the earthquake is low or high. The earthquake can occur both on land and in sea or oceans. Some of the world’s largest magnitude earthquakes have caused much destruction in the past years. Let’s discuss about Top 10 Largest Earthquakes By Magnitude.
10 1833 Sumatra earthquake
At number 10, it is one of the most destructible earthquakes which happened at the southwestern coast of Sumatra island. It occurred at 22:00 local time and was magnitude ranging between 8.8-9.2 Mw. It also caused a tsunami. The earthquake caused major damages from Pariaman to Bengkulu and also in Seychelles.
This earthquake lasted for 5 minutes in Bengkulu and 3 minutes in Padang region. The effect of the earthquake was also seen in the Indian Ocean. The Sumatra Island extends from Indo-Australian boundary to the Eurasian Plate.
9 1762 Arakan earthquake
The next one on the list is the Arakan earthquake which occurred on 2nd April, 1762 at 17:00 local time. The epicenter of the earthquake was the coastal area stretching from Chittagong to Arakan in Burma. The magnitude of the earthquake was of 8.8.
The earthquake affected the Bay of Bengal and 200 people died in this earthquake. The shaking of the earth lasted for 4 minutes at Chittagong. The tsunami occurred on the northeastern coast of the Bay of Bengal both as Dhaka and Kolkata.
8 869 Sanriku earthquake
This earthquake occurred near Sendai in the northern portion of Honshu. It took place on 9th July and it was of magnitude 8.4. This tsunami caused heavy destruction on the Sendai plain which carried sand deposits up to 4 km from the coast. Around 1000 people died by this earthquake.
The town of Tagajo was entirely damaged from this earthquake. The remains of 8th century structures were found in the town of Tagajo. Such a major earthquake takes place in every 500-1000 years.
7 1700 Cascadia earthquake
A major earthquake occurred on 26th January, 1700 of magnitude between 8.7-9.2. It took place on the Juan de Fuca Plate in the Pacific Ocean from Vancouver Island to northern part of California. An area of more than 1000 km was affected by this earthquake. This earthquake caused a tsunami near the coastal region of Japan.
This kind of earthquake occurs in every 500 years in the Cascadia zone and total 13 earthquakes occurred here prior the 1700. The cities of Seattle, Vancouver, Victoria and many other nearby regions will get affected in the future with such earthquakes.
6 1868 Arica earthquake
The epicenter of this earthquake was near Chile and it occurred at 21:30 UTC on 13th August, 1868. This earthquake was of the magnitude of 8.5 to 9.0. It resulted into major tsunami in the Pacific Ocean in Hawaii, Japan, New Zealand and Australia.
The earthquake caused damage from the Nazca Plate till South American Plate. Peru was highly affected by this earthquake and many ships were sunk in the ocean and many people were killed.
5 1952 Kamchatka earthquakes
One of the largest earthquakes in the world is that of Kamchatka Peninsula. It further caused a major tsunami in areas of Kuril Islands, Sakhalin Oblast, USSR and other parts of Russian SFSR. The earthquake damaged the town of Severo-Kurilsk severely.
There was a major earthquake in the Pacific Ocean which was of magnitude 9.0. The waves of tsunami were about 59 ft. high. Around 2,336 people were killed by this earthquake. Many survivors were then moved to Russia.
4 2011 Tohoku earthquake
Japan has always seen some of the world’s most severe earthquakes. An earthquake of magnitude 9.0 hit the coastal regions of Japan on 11th March, 2011 at 14:46 JST. The epicenter of this earthquake was Oshika Peninsula of Tohoku and it occurred at the depth of 29 km. This earthquake was the most powerful one in the 1900.
The tsunami waves re
ached up to 133 ft. in height. Honshu was affected by this earthquake severely and about 10 cm of Earth axis was moved by this earthquake. About 15,894 people were killed and more than 2,500 people were missing in this earthquake.
3 2004 Indian Ocean earthquake
A massive earthquake occurred on the western coast of Sumatra, Indonesia on 26th December, 2004 at 00:58 UTC of magnitude 9.3. This earthquake further caused tsunami on the boundaries of Indian Ocean. The tsunami waves reached up to the height of 100ft.
Indonesia, India, Sri Lanka and Thailand were majorly affected countries by this earthquake and tsunami. This earthquake was recorded as one of the most destructible earthquakes in the history. It lasted for about 8 to 10 minutes.
2 1964 Alaska earthquake
The next earthquake on the list is that of Alaska which occurred on 27th March, 1964. The south central portion of Alaska was majorly affected by this earthquake which then resulted in tsunami causing 139 deaths. Many buildings and structures collapsed due to this earthquake.
It had the magnitude of 9.2 and the shaking of the earth lasted for 4 minutes and 38 seconds. This earthquake was the most powerful one in North America.
1 1960 Valdivia earthquake
The most powerful earthquake in the history of the world occurred in southern part of Chile. The magnitude was between 9.4-9.6 on scale. The earthquake lasted for about 10 minutes and it resulted in tsunami which caused destruction in Hawaii, Philippines, Japan, New Zealand and Australia.
The epicenter of this earthquake was near Lumaco in Santiago. The tsunami waves reached up to the height of 35 ft. and it went covering an area of 10,000 km. Around 6,000 people were killed in this earthquake.
These earthquakes are still remembered as some of the dreadful incidents in the world and people have still not recovered from the loss caused due to them.
Top 10 Largest Earthquakes By Magnitude
1. 1960 Valdivia earthquake
2. 1964 Alaska earthquake
3. 2004 Indian Ocean earthquake
4. 2011 Tohoku earthquake
5. 1952 Kamchatka earthquakes
6. 1868 Arica earthquake
7. 1700 Cascadia earthquake
8. 869 Sanriku earthquake
9. 1762 Arakan earthquake
10. 1833 Sumatra earthquake
List of Top Ten of this Article