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Tsunami - The Killer Waves


The term tsunami has been derived from the Japanese term ‘Tsu’ meaning harbour, and ‘nami’ meaning waves. Thus tsunami means ‘harbour waves’. Underwater earth quakes, volcanic eruptions and land slides cause these killer waves.


Tsunami :-
A tsunami consists of a series of waves which rise as high as 10 metres or more. They move inland, several hundred miles causing untold disaster. These waves move at a great speed and sometimes they move even 50 km. per hour on the coastal plain.

The speed of the waves is what causes most destruction as people do not have enough time to reach safer places.

The force of the tsunami is also enormous. They can occur during the day or at night.

The tsunami that hit the Indian Ocean on December 26th 2004 was recorded as far as Peru and north-eastern Canada. The waves travelled several times round the globe before it finally dissipated.

The December 26th Tsunami


An undersea earthquake occurred on December 26, 2004, with an epicenter off the west coast of Sumatra, Indonesia. The earthquake triggered a series of devastating tsunamis along the coasts of most of the countries bordering the Indian Ocean. 225,000 people were killed in eleven countries.


Countries affected by the Asian Tsunami :-

It inundated coastal areas with waves up to 30 meters. This was the ninth-deadliest natural disaster in modern history. Indonesia, Sri Lanka, India, Thailand, and Myanmar were hardest hit.

The earthquake which triggered the tsunami was of a magnitude between 9.1 and 9.3 on the Richter Scale. It is the second largest earthquake ever recorded on a seismograph. This earthquake lasted for about 10 minutes. It caused the entire planet to vibrate as much as 1 cm and triggered other earthquakes as far away as Alaska.

The disaster is known by the scientific community as the Great Sumatra-Andaman earthquake, and is also known as the Asian Tsunami and the Boxing Day Tsunami.

The tsunami occurred exactly one year after the 2003 Bam earthquake and exactly two years before the 2006 Hengchun earthquake.

The plight of the many affected people and countries prompted a widespread humanitarian response.

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