5 Destructive Effects of Earthquakes

Earthquakes are not associated with the weather but instead are natural disasters. An earthquake is a tremor below the surface of the Earth which causes shaking of the Earth’s crust. Destructive Effects of Earthquakes are

Destructive Effects of Earthquakes

  • Earthquakes measuring 6 and above on the Richter scale may result in the loss of human lives. About 15,000 people are killed every year because of earthquakes.
  • Earthquakes inflict serious damage to buildings, structures, roads, bridges and railways. Submergence: Many coastal areas get submerged in water because of earthquakes. For example, Dwarka in Gujarat now lies submerged in water.
  • Powerful earthquakes may change the course of rivers which may render an area infertile.
  • After earthquakes, fire may also break out. This may happen when inflammable material is thrown onto broken gas lines. In the earthquake of 1906 in San Francisco, a great fire broke out which proved to be more destructive than the earthquake itself.
  • Tsunamis are caused by earthquakes occurring in the sea. These can cause huge destruction in the coastal regions.

A seismograph is an instrument that measures and records the details of an earthquake such as its duration, force, and direction. The seismograph has a pen attached to it. When an earthquake occurs, the pen also vibrates along with the vibrations produced by the earthquake. The pen records the movements of vibrations on a moving strip of paper. Various waves which are formed by the moving pen give us an estimate of the direction and force of an earthquake. It also calculates the difference in the arrival of P and S waves.

The intensity of an earthquake is measured on the Richter scale and the Mercalli scale. The Richter scale is commonly used for measuring an earthquake. While the Richter scale measures the intensity of the earthquake on a scale from 1 to 9, the Mercalli scale measures it on a 12 point scale. Earthquakes measured above the Richter scale of 6 onwards cause damage to life and property.

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A volcano is a vent or an opening in the Earth’s crust from which hot magma erupts the interior of the Earth. Volcanoes are generally caused because of the following reasons. Read more

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