Comparing the Kobe and Haiti Earthquakes Essay

457 WordsNov 18, 20122 Pages
MEDC is an abbreviation for More Economically Developed Country so an example is Japan, this is a rich country. LEDC stands for Less Economically Developed Country. An example of an LEDC is Haiti. Earthquakes occur along conservative plate margins. When plates move past, towards or away from each other the movement is not smooth. Friction causes the plates to be stuck. This causes pressure to build up. Earthquakes occur when this build-up of pressure is released. The point where the earthquake starts is called the focus. Energy waves disperse rapidly from this point. The point at ground level, directly above the focus, is called the epicentre. On Tuesday 12 January 2010 at 16:53, a huge earthquake, with a magnitude of 7.0 on the Richter scale, struck the Caribbean island of Haiti. Haiti is only half of an island, the other half being the Dominican Republic, Haiti is the poorest country in the Western Hemisphere, and has a history of destructive earthquakes. Haiti is situated to the north of the Caribbean plate boundary, and the North American Plate. By 24 January, at least 52 aftershocks measuring 4.5 or greater on the Richter scale had been recorded. The US Geological Survey estimates that 3.5 million people lived in the area where 'moderate to heavy' damage occurred. The Haitian government estimates that 230,000 people died, about 300,000 were injured and 1 million were made homeless out of a population of 10 million. 250,000 buildings were destroyed or badly damaged. For any country, this would have been a major disaster. However, as a very poor nation, Haiti didn’t have the resources of money to help themselves, therefore, the relied heavily on international aid. On Tuesday 17 January 1995 at 5:46, the Hyogo-ken Nanbu earthquake hit Kobe, Japan, and it was not only powerful (7.2 magnitude on the Richter scale), but with the epicentre only 20 km southwest

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