|Does many people die from tsunami?|
Let's talk about the risk of dying from a tsunami
in 2 terms -- frequency (how often does a
tsunami happen?) and magnitude (when a
tsunami hits land, how many people die).
Tsunamis happen quite infrequently around 1
every 10 year. That's very rare, especially
compared to the number of car crashes that happen
every day in every city.
The second thing to consider, each time a tsunami
hits, how many people die? If a tsunami
hits a part of land where nobody lives (a park,
wilderness etc.) then nobody would die. If a
tsunami hits an area with big cities, then many
people could die. However, it is unlikely that
many people would die if a tsunami hit somewhere
in the USA because the US has lots of science
stations in the ocean that measure tsunamis.
This way, if a tsunami formed and headed to the
United States, they would know about it and
evacuate the city where the tsunami was headed.
The 26 December 2004 tsunami killed about 150,000
people, so yes, a tsunami can kill a lot of
Tsunamis are generated by waves due to vertical
motion of Earth's crust caused by earthquakes.
The size of a tsunami depends on where it
originated, the geometry of the seafloor, and the
orientation of the coastline. Unlike storm
waves, tsunami waves can be much bigger.
A recent tsunami in Japan, called the Tohoku
Tsunami, was over 130 feet tall and traveled more
than 5 miles inland. This resulted in flooding of
the coastline and killed almost 16,000
people. However, the same tsunami reached the
coast of California, but only caused waves to be
several feet higher than normal and did not result
in any lives lost.
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