10 Facts About Earthquakes

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Most earthquakes happen along the edges of Earth's big plates. 4 out of 5 of the world's earthquakes take place along the rim of the Pacific Ocean, a zone called the Pacific Ring of Fire. Here are some more facts about earthquakes that you should know.


1
Earthquakes kill approximately 8,000 people each year and have caused an estimated 13 million deaths in the past 4,000 years.

2
The Indian Ocean earthquake in 2004 generated enough energy to power all the homes and businesses in the United States for three days.

3
An average earthquake lasts around a minute.

4
Large earthquakes can have aftershocks that last for years.

5
Parkfield, California, is known as “The Earthquake Capital of the World.”

6
An earthquake in A.D. 1201 in the eastern Mediterranean is labeled the worst earthquake in history and claimed an estimated one million lives

7
An earthquake can release hundreds times more energy than the nuclear bomb that was dropped on Hiroshima in Japan in 1945.

8
The San Andreas Fault is moving about 2 inches a year, about the same rate fingernails grow. At this rate, San Francisco and Los Angeles will be next to each other in 15 million years.

9
Japan is one of the most earthquake-prone nations in the world. Thousands of earthquakes occur in Japan every year, but most of them are very weak.

10
The devastating 2011 earthquake in Japan created a massive 186-mile long and 93 mile wide rift 15 miles under the ocean.