5 Deadly Earthquakes

5 DEADLY-min

There have been several major earthquakes around the world, especially in the last decade. Here are 5 deadly earthquakes that show just how devastating a major earthquake can be. Hopefully they’ll convince you to be prepared.

1. 2015 Nepal Earthquake

Nepal Earthquake

Do you remember the big earthquake in Nepal that occurred in 2015 that killed more than 8,000 people and injured more than 21,000? It occurred on April 25, 2015 and was a magnitude7.8 that triggered avalanches on Mount Everest, killing 21 people which made it the deadliest day on the mountain in history. Hundreds of thousands of people were made homeless and recovery is still ongoing today.

2. Japan Earthquake 2011

Japan Earthquake

This devastating earthquake, also referred to as the “Great East Japan earthquake” in Japan, occurred on March 11, 2011 and was a whopping 9.0 (largest ever recorded in Japan and fourth most powerful in the world). It left almost 16,000 people dead and thousands missing as it triggered powerful tsunami waves that reached heights of up to 133 feet (40.5 meters)! This also caused nuclear accidents as nuclear reactors exploded which caused radioactive leakage. To this day, people on the Pacific coast of North America can find earthquake related debris washed ashore all the way from Japan.

Here’s a clip of just how insane the tsunami was:

Credit: Joseph Friedman

3. Haiti Earthquake 2010

Haiti Earthquake

The 7.0 magnitude earthquake that hit Haiti on January 12, 2010 killed a whopping 316,000 people! It also left 1.5 million people homeless as buildings were pulverized. Haiti is the poorest country in the western hemisphere which led to poor housing conditions and weak buildings that contributed in the cause of several deaths. Because of the weak buildings, several hospitals and emergency buildings were also crushed so there weren’t even any places to treat the injured other than make-shift tents outside. Main roads were blocked which prevented emergency crews from providing aid. Several people still live in tents as it seems recovery is a slow process where funds and resources are limited.

4. 2008 – China Earthquake

Sichuan Earthquake

This 8.0 magnitude earthquake hit China on May 12, 2008 and killed an estimated 90,000 people. It struck the Sichuan province of China and was felt as far as Beijing and Shanghai (930 miles/1,500 km and 1,060 miles/1,700 km away). Almost 5 million , yes, 5 million people were left homeless as this was one of the deadliest earthquakes to hit China in decades. As China has the largest population in the world you can imagine how many people it affected. Strong aftershocks of 6.0 continued to strike months after the main quake causing even more deaths.

5. 2004 – Indonesia Earthquake

Indonesia Tsunami

This monster earthquake recorded a magnitude 9.1 and is the third largest earthquake ever recorded. It occurred just after Christmas on December 26, 2004 just off the west coast of Sumatra in Indonesia killing 230,000 people. It caused a deadly tsunami that rose as high as 100 ft (30 meters) destroying whatever was in its path. The tsunami caused tens of thousands of deaths in countries as far as Sri Lanka and India (2,800 miles/4,500 km away). This inspired a movie called The Impossible starring Naomi Watts and Ewan McGregor which is based on the experience of a survivor and her family. I’ve seen it and it’s pretty good so I recommend you seeing it.

Final Thoughts

As you can see, a major earthquake can cause devastation and can strike at anytime. Are you prepared? Do you know what to do during an earthquake? Do you have an earthquake kit in your home? You might not think an earthquake will strike you area in the next few years or decade but having one just in case will ensure you have some resources to fall back on when you need it the most.

Survivor Stories Wanted

Are you an earthquake survivor? Do you have an amazing story to tell? Comment below and share your experiences with others to help them be more prepared for a major earthquake or contact me at andy@earthquakekitguide.com


  1. Stella

    Thanks for the information. I don’t live in an earthquake zone but you never know when you travel anything can happen. It is good to be prepared.

  2. Fred

    Well I’m in Southern California so it’s not a matter of if, but when!!!

    1. Andy

      I totally agree, I live in Vancouver and am faced with the same threat. That’s what inspired me to build this site to bring awareness that the danger is real.

  3. Rene

    I’ve never been in an earthquake, but have been through other natural disasters. This is great information as it shows an earthquake can happen anywhere and will definitely help in preparedness.


Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *