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View Full Version : Is the Tsunami disaster last week considered the most devastating in history?


Jakeev
Jan 1st, 2005, 06:37 AM
Just was wondering because everytime i read the news, more people are dead and what happened last weekend seems to pale any other Tsunami damage in human history.

Living in SoCalif where major earthquakes are eventually going to ravage California always makes me aware of what can happen here.

It's sad and scary to even comprehend what is happening right now in Asia.

esquímaux
Jan 1st, 2005, 07:52 AM
Yeah, once the death toll hit 100,000 it became a castastrophe of biblical proportions to me.

Jericho
Jan 1st, 2005, 07:53 AM
Yeah, once the death toll hit 100,000 it became a castastrophe of biblical proportions to me.
once it hit 10,000 it was a catastrophe in my mind

Crazy Canuck
Jan 1st, 2005, 07:57 AM
Well, disasters killing 100000+ have happened in recorded history. My only available example is pulled from Bill Bryson's, A Short HIstory of Nearly Everything, which I was conveniently reading last night. In 1815, some volcano in indonesia called Tambora exploded and the resulting blast and the associated tsunamis took at least that many lives. Apparently it was the biggest volcanic explosion in about 10 000 years, and about 150 times the size of the Mount St Helens blast.

That was all taken right from the book, so if it's wrong, don't blame me :p

I would assume that disaster was grander, since I would assume the area wasn't as populated and built up as it is now. Of course, I'm only assuming, and don't really know :)

Crazy Canuck
Jan 1st, 2005, 07:58 AM
once it hit 10,000 it was a catastrophe in my mind
It's certainly a catastrophe, no disagreements there. I certainly wasn't trying to diminish the damage that this natural disaster has done in the above passage... merely sharing something I had read that might help to answer the question.

spyro
Jan 1st, 2005, 08:26 AM
I far as i know about the biggest volcano exploded was Tambora and Krakatau (Krakatoa), both are in Indonesia.
The Krakatoa explotion heard for radius 3000 KM, affected the weather for several years, cause great tsunami and the dusts reached New York. I think those two events was bigger than the Tsunami that was just happen in South Asia.

Sam L
Jan 1st, 2005, 08:35 AM
Well it's all about relativity.

Volcano Mount Toba around 75,000 years ago exploded in the Indonesian islands and reduced human population to around a few thousand.

~ The Leopard ~
Jan 1st, 2005, 08:38 AM
I've just been doing some google searches in answer to this thread. I was wondering, too.

This certainly looks like the worst tsunami ever, measured in terms of human lives lost. There have been bigger ones in terms of the height of the waves, but they were much more local (a local tsunami in a remote bit of Alaska left marks on the mountains showing that it was something like 1700 feet high :eek: ... but I don't think it killed anyone, or maybe one or two people). All the same, there are a couple of previous tsumanis that killed many, many people - one in Japan killed nearly 30,000, and I think that most of the 36,000 people killed by the Krakatoa volcano eruption were actually killed by a 150-foot tsunami.

There have been even worse natural disasters - floods and earthquakes in Asia that have killed numbers of people approaching a million.

A supervolcano eruption in prehistoric times may have been responsible for almost causing the extinction of humanity, which is one reason why we have so little genetic variation these days ... our species may have gone through a "genetic bottleneck" after the equivalent of a nuclear winter which killed almost everyone 75,000 years ago. If there is ever another supervolcano eruption (there's one overdue in the US where the Yellowstone supervolcano erupts every 600,000 years or so) don't count on your chances of surviving, wherever you live in the world.

So it goes. Isn't mother nature wonderful?

*shaking head at all of this*

spyro
Jan 1st, 2005, 08:41 AM
Well it's all about relativity.

Volcano Mount Toba around 75,000 years ago exploded in the Indonesian islands and reduced human population to around a few thousand.
Oh yes, i forget Mount Toba .... The volcano explotion was also huge ... Mount Toba is located near Aceh in Sumatra Islands.

The explotion of Mount Toba create a big Lake name Lake Toba ...
From here we learn 3 huge volcano explotion are in Indonesia ... Toba, Tambora and Krakatoa ... Thanks God, they're already exploded, i guess only Mount Krakatoa that is still active

Jakeev
Jan 1st, 2005, 08:48 AM
Sounds like the volcano eruptions cause more serious tsunamis than just an undersea earthquake. And the Volcano at Yellowstone? Damn now that is very scary.....

Crazy Canuck
Jan 1st, 2005, 09:02 AM
Sounds like the volcano eruptions cause more serious tsunamis than just an undersea earthquake. And the Volcano at Yellowstone? Damn now that is very scary.....
Apparently some dude was hunting around Yellowstone a couple (a few? I put the book down!) decades ago looking for the crater when he realized that the entire park was the crater :o

Well, that's how I remember it. I read this at about 2am yesterday, on top of a migraine. So... yeah ;)

Was it SamL that recommended that book? I heard about it from somebody on here. Good choice, whoever it was :p It's like the asimov books I used to read, but those weren't as general.

TheBoiledEgg
Jan 1st, 2005, 10:04 AM
:sad: NATURAL DISASTERS :sad:
2004 Asian quake disaster - toll so far exceeds 110,000
2003 earthquake in Bam, Iran - official casualty figure is 26,271
1976 Earthquake in Tangshan, China, kills 242,000
1970 Cyclone in Bangladesh kills 500,000
1923 Tokyo earthquake kills 140,000
1887 China's Yellow River breaks its banks in Huayan Kou killing 900,000
1896 Tsunami kills 27,000 in Japan
1815 Volcanic eruption of Mount Tambora on Indonesia's Sumbawa Island kills 90,000
1556 Earthquake in China's Shaanxi, Shanxi and Henan provinces kills an estimated 830,000


http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/world/asia-pacific/4128509.stm

Scotso
Jan 1st, 2005, 11:06 AM
The fact that the population of Asia is so dense and that millions and millions of people live at sea level, it's amazing this sort of thing doesn't happen more often. I think it will change people's mind of where they build their houses and where they go on vacation, at the least.

veryborednow
Jan 1st, 2005, 06:10 PM
1887 China's Yellow River breaks its banks in Huayan Kou killing 900,000
Bloody hell.

spyro
Jan 2nd, 2005, 01:00 PM
:sad: NATURAL DISASTERS :sad:
1887 China's Yellow River breaks its banks in Huayan Kou killing 900,000
1556 Earthquake in China's Shaanxi, Shanxi and Henan provinces kills an estimated 830,000


http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/world/asia-pacific/4128509.stm
OMG :sad:

moby
Jan 2nd, 2005, 03:21 PM
http://www.disasterrelief.org/Disasters/010831tsunami/



The Cumbre Vieja volcano on the Canary Islands' La Palma island may not erupt again for centuries, but when it does disaster could spread across oceans. Shaken loose by the eruption, a gigantic chunk of the mountain's western flank could slide into the Atlantic - shoving massive tsunamis toward the coasts of Africa, Europe, South America, Newfoundland and possibly even the United States.

In the worst-case scenario (detailed in an article in the Sept. 1 issue of Geophysical Research Letters by geophysicists Steven Ward of the University of California at Santa Cruz and Simon Day of University College, London) half a trillion tons of volcanic rock would slip into the ocean.


Map courtesy of the BBC (http://news.bbc.co.uk/).Within five minutes, a wall of water would rise to 1,500-feet high and travel at high-speed 30 miles out to sea. The wave would weaken before it reached land, but it still could be 900 feet high when it would slam into nearby islands. Over the next five to 45 minutes, a series of waves would ripple outward, their crests reaching 150 feet before barreling into the African coast, Spain and England.



Six hours after the eruption, waves reaching 30 feet would arrive in Newfoundland and 45- to 60-foot waves would bombard South America, swamping large parts of land. Nine hours after the eruption, crests reaching 30 to 70 feet would collide into the East Coast of the United States.

However, scientists say the entire area of unstable slope may not fall at once. Instead, smaller landslides may occur over time. These landslides would produce waves one-fourth to half the height of the mega tsunami. Moreover, the disaster is not expected to happen anytime soon. The Cumbre Vieja Volcano last erupted in 1949 and has shown no signs of activity.

"Let's not scare people," Ward told the Associated Press. "Certainly there is no indication that this will happen anytime soon." Even if an eruption occurs, a landslide is not inevitable, he added.

However, the possibility remains. A giant crack stretches up and down the volcano's western flank, threatening to break loose. The threat comes as no surprise. Landslides make up the volcano's history. A pile of debris from past landslides lies on the seafloor at the base of the volcano. "Volcanoes try to continuously add lava to a steep slope, and eventually the slope becomes so heavy it fails," Peter Lipman, a volcanologist with the U.S. Geological Survey, told the Associated Press. "I don't see this as something that is likely to happen very often at La Palm. But it had a failure like this half a million years ago and will again in the future."

Jakeev
Jan 4th, 2005, 01:05 PM
good post........still think the yellowstone supervolcano sounds scarier though....

~ The Leopard ~
Jan 4th, 2005, 01:58 PM
And don't forget the 50,000 people who die every day from plain old starvation and poverty ... without the "need" of a natural disaster. :sad:

VeeDaQueen
Jan 4th, 2005, 02:20 PM
why does Asia have so many disasters?

Jakeev
Jan 5th, 2005, 12:42 PM
And don't forget the 50,000 people who die every day from plain old starvation and poverty ... without the "need" of a natural disaster. :sad:
And cancer, heart disease, car accidents and murder as well.

Volcana
Jan 5th, 2005, 01:19 PM
http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/world/asia-pacific/4128509.stm

In 1984 and 1985, a famine in Ethiopia killed an estimated 900,000 people.
We could have cut that number by 90% if we'd mobilized the kind of effort we're seeing now.