Facts about Earthquakes
Damages by earthquakes/Causes of earthquakes/Japanese Seismic Intensity Scale and Richter Magnitude Scale/Tsunamis/Aftershocks

| Damages by earthquakes

An earthquake(地震、じしん、Jishin) literally means a shaking of the ground.
The tremor may collapse houses and buildings, and cause landslides.
In addition, coastal areas may be affected by a tsunami.
There were times when a tsunami of nearly 10 meters high reached the shore in less than 5 minutes after the tremor, washing people and buildings away.

<Damages by Great Earthquakes>

The Great Hanshin-Awaji Earthquake
Damages by the Southern Hyogo Earthquake
of magnitude 7.3
Cited from
"神戸 災害と戦災 資料館"、神戸市(Kobe City)
The Great Kanto Earthquake
Damages by the Kanto Earthquake of magnitude 7.9
Cited from 地震資料室、
(National Science Museum)

The following table shows the five most fatal earthquakes that struck Japan between 1868 and 2005.

No. Year Month Day Name of the Earthquake Magnitude

Death Toll

Major Killer
1 1923   9   1 The Great Kanto Earthquake
(Kanto Daishinsai)
7.9 105,385 Fire
2 1896   6 15 Sanriku Earthquake 8.5 21,959 Tsunami
3 1891 10 28 Noubi Earthquake 8.0 7,273 Tremor
4 1995   1 17 Southern Hyogo Earthquake
(Hanshin-Awaji Daishinsai)
7.3 5,502 Tremor
5 1948   6 28 Fukui Earthquake 7.1 3,728 Tremor
※The death toll indicates the number of people who died immediately after the temblor.
Adapted fromn("関東大震災−大東京圏の揺れを知る"、武村雅之、鹿島出版会、2003、

The table includes the earthquakes that occurred more than 100 years ago. Major earthquakes are said to reoccur at minimum intervals of 70 to 80 years, or at maximum intervals of 150 to 200 years.

There are many websites on earthquakes and tsunamis.We will introduce a few.


•阪神 淡路大震災 写真から見る震災
(On the website of "神戸 災害と戦災 資料館"、神戸市(Kobe City))

(On the website of "神戸大学附属図書館震災文庫"、神戸大学附属図書館(Kobe Univ. Library))

•"地震を知ろう 地震災害から身を守るために"
(On the website of 地震調査研究推進本部(The Headquarters for Earthquake Research Promotion))

•ライブラリー室 1995年1月17日 阪神淡路大震災
(On the website of "地震報道映像ライブラリー")


(On the website of 港湾空港技術研究所 津波防災研究センター(The Port and Airport Research Institute (PARI))) http://www.pari.go.jp/bsh/ky-skb/trc/pw.pdf

•Java Tsunami Report from Pangandaran
(On the website of 京都大学 防災研究所 James Mori)

(On the website of INS 津波防災研究会)