Tuesday, October 3, 2023

10 Dangerous Earthquakes in Japan

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In this article, we will discuss the 10 dangerous earthquakes in Japan.

An earthquake may be defined as the sudden shock of the earth that emits the energy in the earth’s lithosphere causing the formation of seismic waves.

The earthquake can be caused due to volcanic eruption, moving of tectonic plates, formation of the cave in a small area, or due to explosions. It is determined with the help of a seismograph by Seismometers and is measured on the Richter Magnitude Scale.



  1. 10 Dangerous Earthquakes in Japan  

The list of the 10 biggest earthquakes in japan is prepared depending on the magnitude and destruction of the earthquake. The top 10 biggest earthquakes in Japan are as follows:


10. Great Kanto earthquake, 1923

In 1923, a magnitude 7.9 earthquake hit the Kanto plain on the island of Honshu on the morning on the date of Sept. 1, 1923. The movement extended up to 10 minutes in a few locations. The earthquake destroyed Tokyo, then home to about 2 million people, and caused extensive damage to the whole of the Kanto region.

During this earthquake around 142,800 people lost their lives, making it one of the most dangerous of all time.


Location Island of Honshu
Date Sept. 1, 1923
Time 11:58:44 JST
Magnitude 7.9
Deaths 142,800


 Earthquakes in Japan


9. Genroku earthquake, 1703

Japan had faced two earthquakes with a shocking death value of more than 100,000 people. The Genroku earthquake in 1703 was only a magnitude of 8.0, but along with its tsunami, the number of death went to 108,000 people.

Genroku terms to the Japanese era spanning from 1688 to 1704. The earthquake actually hit Sagami Bay, about 25 miles (40 kilometers) southwest of Tokyo. It fractured in the middle of a tectonic plate, different from Japan’s latest earthquake, which hit where two plates ram together.


Location Genroku
Date December 31, 1703
Time 02:00 JST
Magnitude 8.0
Deaths 108,000


 Earthquakes in Japan


8. Nankaido earthquake, 1946

On the period of World War II, a magnitude 8.1 earthquake hit Nankaido, Japan, on the date of Dec. 20, 1946. The earthquake was experienced from Northern Honshu Japan’s largest island and home to around 100 million people to the southernmost island of Kyushu. Due to this earthquake, 1,362 people lost their lives.

This earthquake fractured in the Nankai Trough, a subduction zone where one tectonic plate moves beneath another plate. Earthquakes have been fracturing here every 100 to 200 years since the 7th century.


Location Nankaido
Date December 20, 1946
Time 04:19 JST
Magnitude 8.1-8.4
Deaths 1,362


 Earthquakes in Japan


7. Aomori earthquake, 1968

This magnitude of 8.2 earthquake hit the east coast of Honshu, near Misawa, Japan, and was obeyed by a large tsunami, 52 people lost their lives. The intensity of the earthquake can be experienced in Shindo 5 in Aomori, Aomori, and Hakodate, Hokkaido.


Location Honshu
Date 1968-05-16
Time  9:36 p.m JST
Magnitude 8.2
Deaths 52



 Earthquakes in Japan


6. Kuril Islands earthquake, 2006

Not all big earthquakes are dangerous it depends on the area. In 2006, a magnitude 8.4 quake took place a tsunami to struck Japan’s northern coast. No lives were lost on the sparsely populated islands, which are home to around 19,000 people.

The earthquake fractured about 19 miles (30 km) depth and activated a tsunami that made one person injured in Waikiki, Hawaii. The tsunami also destroyed docks in Crescent City, Calif., which was struck strongly by last month’s tsunami.


Location Kuril Islands
Date October 13, 1963
Time 21:14 JST
Magnitude 8.4
Deaths 0
 Earthquakes in Japan

5. Sanriku earthquake, 1933

In 1933, an 8.4 magnitude earthquake set off a tsunami, producing extensive damage to towns on the Sanriku coast of the Tohoku region of Honshu, more than 3,000 lost their lives.

The earthquake was nearly around 180 miles (290 km) deep, but the tsunami was strong sufficient to clean away around 3,000 houses. The waves that reached up to 94 feet (28.7 m) were measured at Honshu’s Ryori Bay. About 10-foot (3m) waves were measured in Hawaii.


Location Sanriku coast
Date June 15, 1896
Time 19:32:30 JST
Magnitude 8.4
Deaths 3,000



 Earthquakes in Japan


4. Ansei-Nankai earthquake, 1854

Japan has been struck by many other 8.4 magnitude earthquakes. The Ansei-Nankai earthquake was a destructive one that took the lives of 10,000 people on the island of Kyushu, resulting in it the danger of its size. At the time, the earthquake was criticized by a giant catfish, called Namazu to understand more about it you need to check the history of the earthquake.

Ansei is the term for the Japanese era period from 1854 to 1860. Nankai is the trough where the earthquake fractured, south of Honshu.

This earthquake struck just one day after a similarly sized Ansei-Tokai earthquake, this earthquake took almost 2,000 people’s lives. One year later, the Ansei Edo earthquake, a 6.9 magnitude, would take the lives of 6,600 people.


Location Nankai
Date December 24, 1854
Time 16:00 JST
Magnitude 8.4
Deaths >3,000


 Earthquakes in Japan



3. Meiji-Sanriku earthquake, 1896

The magnitude of this earthquake was 8.5 earthquake that took the lives of more than 27,000 people in Sanriku, closely the similar place as the 1933 earthquake. The earthquake was very dangerous in itself and was too far deep to cause much destruction, but it set off a huge tsunami. The tsunami moved across the Pacific Ocean to Hawaii and California. The earthquake was obeyed by 76 aftershocks of magnitude higher than 5.0.


Location Sanriku
Date June 15, 1896
Time 19:32 JST
Magnitude 8.5
Deaths 22,066



 Earthquakes in Japan

2. Hoei earthquake, 1707

In the early 1700s, many earthquakes were felt. Just some years after the Genroku earthquake, a magnitude of 8.6 earthquakes took the lives of 5,000 people in the Nankaido and Tokai regions, on the islands of Honshu and Shikoku.

The earthquake fractured all sections of the Nankai fault, the only earthquake known to have performed so. It also activated an eruption of Mount Fuji 50 days later.

Location Sanriku
Date October 28, 1707
Time 14:00 JST
Magnitude 8.6
Deaths 22,066



 Earthquakes in Japan


1. Tohoku earthquake, 2011

The Tohoku earthquake happened at the time of 14:46 JST (05:46 UTC) on the date 11 March. The magnitude 9.0–9.1 (Mw) undersea megathrust earthquake, made an epicenter in the Pacific Ocean, 72 km (45 mi) east of the Oshika Peninsula of the Tōhoku area, and remained accurately for six minutes, causing a tsunami. It is also known as the “Great East Japan Earthquake” in japan.


Location Tohoku
Date 11 March 2011
Time 14:46 JST
Magnitude  9.0-9.1
Deaths 5,000



 Earthquakes in Japan



Read Also: Earthquakes in India


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Er. Madhu Krishna Poudel
Er. Madhu Krishna Poudel
He is a founder and lead author of Dream Civil International and his civil engineering research articles has been taken as source by world's top news and educational sites like USA Today, Time, The richest, Wikipedia, etc.
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