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Posts tagged Earthquake

Chiloé Island in Southern Chile’s Los Lagos Region

42.4S 73.7W

March 9th, 2010 Category: Mountains

Chile - February 25th, 2010

Chile - February 25th, 2010

Chiloé Island (Spanish: Isla de Chiloé), also known as Greater Island of Chiloé (Isla Grande de Chiloé), is the largest island of the Chiloé Archipelago off the coast of Chile, in the Pacific Ocean. The island is located in southern Chile, in the Los Lagos Region, visible here in the lower left quadrant.

The effects of the recent Chilean earthquake were felt as far south as Chiloé Island. Argentina has sent construction teams there to help reconstruct some of the washed away coastal buildings.

Chiloé Island (8,394 km², 3241 sq mi), is the second largest island in Chile (and the fifth largest in South America), after the Isla Grande de Tierra del Fuego. It is separated from the Chilean mainland by the Chacao Strait (“Canal Chacao”) to the north, and by the Gulf of Ancud (Golfo de Ancud) and the Gulf of Corcovado (Golfo Corcovado) to the east; the Pacific ocean lies to the west, and the Chonos Archipelago lies to the south, across the Boca del Guafo.

The island is 190 km (118 mi) from north to south, and averages 55–65 km wide (35 to 40 mi). The capital is Castro, on the east side of the island; the second largest town is Ancud, at the island’s northwest corner, and there are several smaller port towns on the east side of the island, such as Quellón, Dalcahue and Chonchi.

Chiloé Island and the Chonos Archipelago are a southern extension of the Chilean coastal range, which runs north and south, parallel to the Pacific coast and the Andes Mountains. The Chilean Central Valley lies between the coastal mountains and the Andes, of which the Gulfs of Ancud and Corcovado form the southern extension. Mountains run north and south along the spine of the island. The east coast is deeply indented, with several natural harbors and numerous smaller islands.

Devastating 8.8 Magnitude Earthquake Shakes Chile – March 1st, 2010

35.3S 72.4W

March 1st, 2010 Category: Earthquakes, Image of the day

Chile - February 28th, 2010

Chile - February 28th, 2010

Chile has begun to count the cost of its deadly earthquake as nations around the Pacific eased their fears of a devastating tsunami. The quake, which occurred on Saturday morning, killed at least 350 people – 90% of them in their homes. It is feared the damage may cost tens of billions of dollars.

The epicenter was offshore of Chile’s Maule Region, near the city of Concepción, about 325 km (200 miles) southwest of Santiago. However, the effects of the 8.8 magnitude quake were felt as far away as Sao Paulo, Brazil – a distance of about 2850 kilometers.

It is the largest earthquake to hit Chile in 50 years and the sixth strongest ever recorded – 100 times stronger than the one that hit Haiti in January.  Over 50 aftershocks have been recorded.

The epicenter of the quake was towards the center of this image; Santiago is located towards the top. Upon opening the full version, the majority of the Chilean coast can be observed, from the Atacama Desert in the North to Patagonia in the South.

The death toll looks set to rise, following reports that about 350 people died in the town of Constitución alone. Chilean President Michelle Bachelet said that two million people had been affected by the earthquake. Many Chileans in affected areas have spent the first night since the earthquake outdoors, afraid to stay inside.

Meanwhile fears of a devastating tsunami across the Pacific receded on Sunday. About 50 Pacific countries and territories had issued tsunami alerts, although on Sunday the Pacific Tsunami Warning Center lifted its Pacific-wide alert. Japan has maintained an alert, issuing evacuation orders for 320,000 people around the coast. However, it downgraded it from major to normal – meaning waves of two metres were expected rather than three. French Polynesia and Tahiti were among those hit by high waves, but no casualties have been reported.

Aftershocks Affect Port-au-Prince and Petit-Goâve, Haiti – January 24th, 2010

January 24th, 2010 Category: Earthquakes, Image of the day

Haiti - January 20th, 2010

Haiti - January 20th, 2010

This orthorectified image focuses on Port-au-Prince, Haiti, on the shores of Port-au-Prince Bay. A massive earthquake occurred inland, on 12 January 2010, approximately 25 kilometres (16 mi) west-southwest from Port-au-Prince at a depth of 13 kilometres (8.1 mi) at 16:53 UTC-5 on the Enriquillo-Plantain Garden fault system.

The United States Geological Survey (USGS) recorded six aftershocks in the two hours after the main earthquake. The aftershocks were at magnitudes of approximately 5.9, 5.5, 5.1, 4.5, and 4.5. Within the first nine hours 26 aftershocks of magnitude 4.2 or greater were recorded, 12 of which were magnitude 5.0 or greater.

On 20 January at 11:03 UTC, the date this image was taken, the strongest aftershock since the earthquake, measuring magnitude 5.9 Mw, struck Haiti. The U.S. Geological Survey reported its epicentre was about 56 kilometres (35 miles) WSW of Port-au-Prince, which would place it almost exactly under the city of Petit-Goâve. A UN representative reported that the aftershock collapsed seven buildings in Petit-Goâve.

Workers from the charity Save the Children reported hearing “already weakened structures collapsing”  but most sources report no further significant damage to infrastructure in Port-au-Prince. Further casualties are thought to be minimal because people had been sleeping in the open.

Earthquake Strikes Léogâne and Port-au-Prince, Haiti

18.5N 72.3W

January 21st, 2010 Category: Earthquakes

Haiti - January 19th, 2010

Haiti - January 19th, 2010

A major earthquake struck southern Haiti on Tuesday, January 12th, knocking down buildings and power lines and inflicting what its ambassador to the United States called a catastrophe for the Western Hemisphere’s poorest nation.

The 2010 Haitian earthquake was a catastrophic magnitude 7.0 Mw earthquake. Its epicentre was near Léogâne, approximately 25 km (16 miles) west of Port-au-Prince, the capital of Haiti. Port-au-Prince can be seen along the shores of the Port-au-Prince Bay near the center of this orthorectified image, taken one week after the catastrophe.

The earthquake occurred at 16:53 local time (21:53 UTC) on Tuesday, 12 January 2010, at a depth of 13 km (8.1 miles). The United States Geological Survey recorded a series of at least 33 aftershocks, 14 of which were between magnitudes 5.0 and 5.9.

The International Red Cross estimated that about three million people were affected by the quake; the Haitian Interior Minister, Paul Antoine Bien-Aimé, anticipated on 15 January that the disaster would claim between 100,000 and 200,000 lives. Haitian Prime Minister Jean-Max Bellerive announced that by 18 January over 70,000 bodies had been buried in mass graves.

The earthquake caused major damage to Port-au-Prince and the surrounding area. Many notable landmark buildings were significantly damaged or destroyed, including the Presidential Palace (President René Préval survived), the National Assembly building, the Port-au-Prince Cathedral, and the main jail. The headquarters of the United Nations Stabilization Mission in Haiti (MINUSTAH), located in the capital, collapsed and the Mission’s Chief, Hédi Annabi, his deputy, Luiz Carlos da Costa, and the acting police commissioner were confirmed dead.

Aftershocks Continue Near L’Aquila, Death Toll Raised to 289

April 10th, 2009 Category: Earthquakes

L'Aquila, Italy - April 9th, 2009

L'Aquila, Italy - April 9th, 2009

Collapsed church, L'Aquila ©Adnkronos

Collapsed church, L'Aquila

Map of epicenter - source: BBC

Map of epicenter

The city of L’Aquila can be seen in the valley in the middle of this orthorectified ASAR image of central Italy.

The death toll from the magnitude 6.3 earthquake that struck the region was raised to 289 on Friday morning, reports the BBC.

The Italian government has extended the search for people who could still be alive under the rubble until Sunday; however, rescue workers believe the chances of finding survivors to be remote and so will focus on recovering bodies and assessing the extent of the damage.

Aftershocks are continuing to hamper such rescue efforts. On Thursday evening a tremor measuring 4.9, the fourth-largest since the earthquake, brought down a badly damaged four-storey building in the centre of L’Aquila.

Some 28,000 people have been left homeless by the quake. Meanwhile, President Napolitano has said poor construction is to blame for many of the deaths in Monday’s disaster.

Rescue worker and damaged building, L'Aquila, Italy - ©AFP

Rescue worker and damaged building

Aerial view of L'Aquila ©Adnkronos

Aerial view of L'Aquila

Citing “widespread irresponsibility” in the design and construction of modern buildings, he called for an investigation to find out how it was possible that essential buildings standards had not been applied. Modern buildings that suffered partial or total collapse in the quake include a hospital, city buildings, the provincial seat and university buildings, AFP news agency reports.