On the 7th of February an earthquake rattled Taiwan. According to the authorities, more than 30 people were found dead and many trapped beneath the fallen buildings. With a magnitude of 6.4, this earthquake was powerful, but certainly not the strongest. Here is a list of the world’s 8 worst earthquakes since the 1900s …

 

1. Chile (1960) — Magnitude 9.5

The world’s most powerful earthquake occurred on the 22nd of May 1960, near Temuco, Southern Chile. Approximately 1,650 people were killed, 3,000 injured and 2,000,000 left homeless. Infrastructural damage to the territory, especially on the port of Puerto Saavedra, rose to a cost of around $550 million. What’s more, Hawaii, Japan, the Philippines and the United States also suffered damages from the earthquake.

2. Alaska (1964) — Magnitude 9.2

A few years later, the world’s second largest earthquake hit Alaska. Called the Prince William Sound, it devastated the Gulf of Alaska and killed nine people. However, the tsunami that followed took the lives of more than 120 people. The costs reached $311 million.

3. Off the West Coast of Northern Sumatra (2004) — Magnitude 9.1

14 Asian and African countries were touched by the deadliest earthquake ever with 230,000 people dead. One of the most damaged countries was Indonesia with more than 170,000 people killed.

4. Japan (2011) — Magnitude 9

With a tsunami rising to 30-feet, this earthquake caused much damage in Japan, especially to the nuclear reactors. More than 15,800 deaths were registered with damages estimated close to $300 billion. What’s more, this event has become an international ecological disaster.

5. Kamchatka (1952) — Magnitude 9

The Hawaiian Islands has been hurt the most by this earthquake. Luckily, no dead people have been recorded. Nonetheless, there were damages, especially on the Honolulu harbour. A million dollars was needed to support casualties of the tsunami.

6. Chile (2010) — Magnitude 8.8

A frightening number of earthquakes have been registered in Concepción city since the sixteenth century. In 2010, one of the strongest occurred resulting in 521 deaths, around 12,000 injured and 800,000 left homeless. This new disaster cost the country $30 billion.

7. Ecuador-Colombia (1906) — Magnitude 8.8

This earthquake originated off the coast of Ecuador, causing a formidable tsunami on the coast of Colombia. The tsunami is estimated to have killed between 500 to 1,500 people, and was even observed in America and Japan.

8. Rat Islands, Alaska (1965) — Magnitude 8.7

This earthquake caused a 10-meter high tsunami on Shemya Island. Some damage was recorded and the cost of repairs was estimated at around $10,000.

 

Sources:

http://edition.cnn.com/2016/02/07/asia/taiwan-earthquake/index.html

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-asia-35530722

http://www.theguardian.com/world/2011/mar/11/10-most-powerful-earthquakes-history

http://earthquake.usgs.gov/earthquakes/world/10_largest_world.php

http://edition.cnn.com/2013/07/17/world/asia/japan-earthquake—tsunami-fast-facts/