A tsunami (Japanese word for “harbor wave”) is a series of big waves which is produced by some violent disturbances in seas or oceans. Large movements and disturbances on the ocean’s surface generate a series of ocean waves known as tsunami. They are giant waves that can rearrange the seabed, flood vast sites of land, and carry earthly substances out to sea and crash into shore. These disturbances are caused by volcanic eruptions, underwater explosions and landslides. Earthquakes are the most frequent cause of tsunamis. Tsunamis can easily travel thousands of distances or can occur near the shore when the disturbances occur in the deep ocean. The effect of tsunami is very devastating in the areas in which it hits. Ocean tsunami waves can reach 30 feet and can grow as high as 100 feet.
Below is a list of the top 10 most dangerous tsunamis on record in the world:
10) Kyushu Island, Japan
The tsunami in the year 1972 was one of the 1st tsunamis to cause devastation in the east coast of Kyushu which is the southernmost major island of Japan. The tsunami was put off by a little Earthquake. The earthquake was weak but still it was felt very far away as it resulted into a creation of a 50-foot wave. The wave moved towards a small island (Kyushu’s capital city), a home to 5,000 innocent people. The whole island was devastated and was totally submerged. The island was declared not fit to live in after the tsunami for a long time. In total, 15,030 people were killed during the catastrophe.
9) Southern Peru- Chile
A tsunami in the Pacific Ocean was produced by the 1868 Arica Earthquake, recorded in Hawaii, New Zealand and Japan. Although the tsunami was generated across the Pacific, most of the associated damage occurred in some parts of southern Peru. The place is now known as “Chile”. Almost complete destruction of the area was caused by the disaster. The estimated number of deaths is 25,674.
8) Japan: Sanriku
In year 1896, an Earthquake with a magnitude of 8.5 attacked Japan, Sanriku. As a result of which 1896, 27,122 people died and 9,247 were injured. Japanese lost their lives due to the most devastating tsunami in Japanese history. Several houses were swept away. The tsunami attained a height of 25 meters (about 80 feet) and was found across the Pacific.
7) Tokaido-Nankaido, Japan
“Nankaido” as per the name it denotes both the earliest division of the country and the key road. The Earthquake and the resulting Tsunami was the largest in Japanese history and caused more than 5,000 casualties in 1707. The magnitude of the Earthquake was 8.6 ML. the average height of the tsunami was from 7.7m upto 10m in places. The disaster affected the main areas of Tokaido and Nankaido.
There were 29,000 destroyed houses with around 30,000 estimated numbers of deaths.
6) Krakatau, Indonesia
On Monday morning 1883, a 40m high tsunami hits the sea of Krakatau, Indonesia. This was a major seismic event in Indonesia. It was caused as a result of the volcanic eruption of volcano Krakatoa. The weak points in the Earth’s crust led to the formation of volcanoes, the same thing happens in case of an Earthquake. This was the worst Monday morning ever for the people of Krakatau. Many People were paralyzed with fear as they got carried away with the huge wave of tsunami.
Around 36,500 people were found dead. It was the first modern catastrophe. Later it was observed that the same geological sew up column which was previously responsible for the Sumatran earthquake, was now responsible for Krakatoa volcanic eruption. The terrible effects were strangely similar. It produced the loudest sound ever.
5) South China Sea (Taiwan)
Taiwan was hit by Earthquake in 1782 that triggered a deadly tsunami in the country’s South China Sea.
More than 40,000 people died from the disaster, half people were injured and millions were left homeless. The giant waves deluged rural areas and cities. It was one of the largest attacks of tsunami in history.
4) Messina, Italy
In 1908, a very dangerous tsunami attacked the Sicilian city of Messina. As per the new study it is revealed that it was not an earthquake that caused the tsunami; it was an underwater landslide- a recurrent and impulsive phenomenon. The calamity created a distressed and shocked environment. Many people were homeless and scarcity is all over the place. The maximum death toll is 123,000.
3) The Great Lisbon Earthquake
An earthquake occurred in Portugal, Ireland, Morocco and the United Kingdom on 1st of November 1755. The day was a Catholic holiday. Fires and tsunami followed the earthquake and totally destroyed all the neighboring areas of Lisbon. The estimated magnitude of this earthquake was 8.5-9.0 as indicated by moment magnitude scale; its epicenter was in the Atlantic Ocean. The fact that makes this earthquake one of the deadliest is the estimated number of deaths in Lisbon alone was between 10,000 and 100,000 people
2) Ancient Greece Eruption
Killer waves were produced by the immense eruption of the Thera volcano in the Aegean Sea. This thing happened more than 3,000 years ago in year 1410 B.C.E. Scientists researched about this incident and suggested that giant tsunamis from the shattering eruption hit coastal areas, the waves raced thousand miles across the Eastern Mediterranean littoral. At that time, the region was habitat to growing civilizations in Turkey, Egypt, Phoenicia, Cyprus and Crete. Today the remains of this eruption compose up the Greek Archipelago of Santorini.
1) Indian Ocean
This is the most deadly hit of tsunami.
In year 2004 tsunami hit the Indian Ocean. Firstly two major earthquakes – one with a magnitude of 8.6 and the other one of 8.3, hit Sumatra then a gaze of tsunami is confirmed. People are informed about it. This caused panic among people, as a result of this people fled buildings and run for high ground. The tsunami killed around 350,000 people. These figures are estimated figures.
After the 2004 tsunami, under the management of Unesco (a UN scientific organization) a monitoring system was put in place. The abnormal behavior of the water line can be detected by the pressure sensors placed on the ocean floor. So that some precautions can be taken before the attack and they can get prepared for the attack.
Tsunami can occur under any and all weather conditions, at any time of the day or night, and in all seasons. One cannot stop it but can minimize its effect and save their lives by taking precautions, listening and following the instructions given by the respective authorities or the disaster management team.