Tsunami Natural Disasters

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During March 11, 2011 there was an earthquake that took place in Japan, causing a devastating tsunami that soon followed after. Warnings by state officials were issued after the earthquake about the oncoming tsunami through a special alert system and text messages, however nine minutes were not enough to prepare for what was to come. Many of the Japanese ifcitizens believed that would be safe because the county’s buildings had been constructed by the seismic building codes. The train systems of Japan were also stopped in order to save thousands of lives. When the tsunami touched down, the waves were so strong that they overpassed protective the tsunami sea walls that encompassed the country in various areas. The tsunami ibroke the world record for being the most catastrophic and fatal. The tsunami was responsible for destroying several roads, railways, and buildings. In addition to the infrastructure lost, the tsunami also killed more than two hundred and thirty thousand people. A few scientists predicted this earthquake and tsunami in Japan but never did they think it was going to be this severe. Tsunami experts researched previous natural disasters that occurred in the past for better understanding and predictions. They stated that with more warnings and knowledge it is possible to save lives in the future. Scientists traveled to Japan and dropped sensors along the fault line to understand the cause of the earthquake. They also examined the damage and came up with better ideas that they can input for the future when reconstructing. One of the main concerns as of today is that there are still several people recovering from this disaster for example, evacuees who lost their homes, reconstructing buildings which could cost up to two hundred and thirty-five billion. This is one of the worst earthquakes that has happened in recent years which is substantial because they roughly have one thousand five hundred earthquakes a year.


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Indonesia suffered from a similar situation. On December 26 2004, Indonesia suffered from a 9.5 magnitude earthquake followed by a tsunami just minutes later. This tsunami was caused by slippage of plates between India and Burma. Several suggest that the warning system should be updated in the coastal regions. This tsunami took two hundred and thirty thousand lives in only hours. Scientists claim that this type of tsunami hits faster than others, meaning there is not enough time to warn the population. The first wave arrived in only a couple minutes swiping away anything that was in the way. The destruction was so intense that the population was in need of clean water, food, medication, and other supplies. They were severely short on necessities to where boards were being used as splints to help the broken bones. Indonesia had a huge concern on what was traveling through both the air and sea. Several volunteers were committed to providing healthcare assistance where it was needed the most. Since then, many communities have recovered and several ruined structures still remain in place. Although Indonesia was left with few resources to recover, it has been a great improvement as of today. One of the impacts caused by this tsunami was enforcing the population to improve their building codes, warning systems, and simply becoming more prepared. The population of Indonesia in 2004 was twenty-two million and as of today is twenty-seven million. Indonesia has less earthquakes a year compared to Japan, but they have a high magnitude which is usually 6.0 or greater. In this case they are affected more since they are not accustomed to experiencing natural disasters of that magnitude.


Another example would be the tsunami that hit Chile. On May 22, 1960 Chile received one of the most devastating tsunami ever recorded. The magnitude of 9.5 causing landslides, volcano eruptions, and floods. The United States had no injuries or deaths but resulted in 3.7 million in damages. This tsunami killed over two hundred million people, injured around three thousand and lasted around eleven minutes. iChile could’ve prepared more efficiently if they only had a few safety measures in place. There was a delay in warning the people causing the death of many individuals affecting them by not allowing them to have more time to get away from the coast. At the time they weren’t well knowledge about the system to sensor the record seismic activity. They brought in a system to detect if a big one is to strike so that they will be alert. DART (Deep-Ocean Assessment and reporting of Tsunamis) station which detects underwater pressure changes, there were also other places into Chile’s northern coast in recent years as part of a more sophisticated tsunami warning system. As well as having troop be deployed to prevent looting, while aid can be delivered to affected areas much faster. This tsunami also affected Hawaii, New Zealand, Australia, and California as well. In 1960 the population in Chile was seven million and as of today it is eighteen million. Chile experiences about one major earthquake a year with a magnitude of 8 or higher and about eighteen major earthquakes a year.


All these tsunami’s have had an impact on the population, geographically, and economically. I believe that in order to prevent certain damages it is important to avoid construction near the coastline, hazard resistance houses and buildings. History has a way of repeating itself, therefore improving is a must after every natural disaster. The impacts of the events that affected the society was reduction of jobs, lack of food, and until this day several countries are still trying to recover from these disasters. Japan, Indonesia, and Chile handled their situations differently because over the years they have improved their warning systems, construction codes, and natural disaster safety training. In Japan after the tsunami they provided a direct relief, feeding, shelter, and recovery fund programs. Most of the funds that were provided to Japan due to the disaster were given to small organizations to help the ones that were in need. Indonesia had immediate assistance from the government, they were given shelter, clean water, sanitation, protection and medical care. Indonesia approved of others assisting them while they were in crisis. “Act for Peace ” was one of many emergency shelters that provided assistance with a temporary home and prevented the spread of diseases. In Chile, relief workers, Army nurses, and other volunteers organized a station where they provided a kitchen for those who ended up homeless. They also established a clinic, where they give tetanus shots to ward off pathogens that can enter the body through wounds.

A tsunami is common near pacific areas and is one of the most destructive natural disasters. Tsunami’s can happen anytime near the coast. It is a series of waves caused by an undersea earthquake. Understanding the warnings is one of the main topics of knowing how to protect yourself from a natural disaster and this includes mother nature warnings as well. Red cross suggests that during a tsunami people go to high land to get as far above sea level as possible. Additionally, going inland while reaching higher ground is recommended as this puts more distance between the person and the wave. Practicing for when the next natural disaster happens is a great tool because instead of not having knowledge in what to do next, muscle memory are natural reflexes. iIndividuals and families should have plans in place in the event of a tsunami. Just like planning for a house fire, the evacuation plan can help alleviate fear by having a general idea of the steps that need to be taken to increase their chances of survival. An example would be possibly having an agreement with another area whether that be a different part of the affected country or even a different country to provide assistance. This can include sending emergency personnel and supplies like food and medical necessities. There isn’t an exact step we could do to prevent a natural disaster but there are ways we could prepare for the worst of them.

The first earthquake that hit was strongest on record in the 20th century with a magnitude of 9.5. With a total of 1,655 lives lost and an estimated 3,000 injured as well as leaving two million people homeless. A few days later the volcano of Cordon Caulle in Lake District of Chile, had been inactive for 40 years. It had been linked seismologists to the earthquake, as well as affecting other countries some major than others. The tsunami in Indonesia in 2004 took the like of at least 225,000 people in several countries. The one that struck Japan in 2011 spawned about 19,300 people. As well as creating the world’s second nuclear emergency. These are just a few of the natural disasters that have caused historical damages in the past decade. One day we may be completely safe from natural disasters but we have come a long way and hopefully one day be able to quickly recover from one. There isn’t much we can all do to prevent a natural disaster, but there are measures we could put in place to reduce the risk of many lives lost, homes destroyed, businesses destroyed, crops flooded animals, plants.

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Tsunami Natural Disasters. (2022, Feb 08). Retrieved from


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