News / Asia

World's Most Powerful Earthquakes

Oil refinery facility is on fire in Ichihara, Chiba Prefecture (near Tokyo) after strong earthquakes hit Japan, March 11, 2011
Oil refinery facility is on fire in Ichihara, Chiba Prefecture (near Tokyo) after strong earthquakes hit Japan, March 11, 2011

The 8.9 magnitude earthquake that struck off the coast of Japan Friday
is the country's most largest, and the fifth most powerful in modern
recorded history.

Here is a list of the world's most powerful earthquakes since 1900, according to the U.S. Geological Survey.

1. Chile (1960) 9.5 The world's most powerful earthquake, off the coast of
southern Chile, killed more than 1,600 people and left 2 million homeless.

2. Alaska, U.S. (1964) 9.2 This earthquake, and an ensuing
tsunami, killed 128 people and caused about $300 million in property damage.

3. Sumatra, Indonesia (2004) 9.1 The deadliest earthquake in recorded
history generated a tsunami that killed more than 227,000 people, mostly
in Indonesia's Aceh province, and displaced 1.7 million others across 14
countries around the Indian Ocean.

4. Kamchatka, Russia (1952) 9.0 An earthquake off the coast of the
remote eastern Russian peninsula caused no casualties, but generated
tsunamis across the Pacific that damaged property in the U.S. state of
Hawaii.

5. Honshu, Japan (2011) 8.9 The earthquake off the coast of Japan
and a subsequent tsunami killed hundreds, shook buildings in Tokyo and
caused significant damage along the country's east coast.

6. Maule, Chile (2010) 8.8 This offshore earthquake and an ensuing
tsunami killed at least 521 people and caused up to $30 billion in
economic losses.

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