We humans live on a very thin layer of mostly rock which all floats on a sea of liquid called magma. Kobe was largely affected, as the epicentre was only 30 km from the city centre. Like all earthquakes, this one was caused by movements in the earth’s crust. Building codes in California require builders to meet standards set to minimize structural damage in an earthquake and coastal cities have building code to reinforce roofs and walls to resist a storm’s high winds. Learn more about earthquakes with this curated collection of classroom resources. The Kobe Earthquake, with a magnitude of 7.2 on the Richter scale, that struck at 5:46 in the morning of January 17, 1995, caused considerable and various types of damage in the Hanshin area around the cities of Kobe and Osaka in Japan. The government was heavily criticized for its slow and ineffectual response, as well as its initial refusal to accept help from foreign countries. The clash of these plates can also cause violent earthquakes, where Earth’s surface shakes. The worst effected area was in the central part of Kobe, a region about 5km … © 1996 - 2020 National Geographic Society. 1145 17th Street NW These environmental hazards shape human activity regionally. The movement was caused by the friction from the Eurasian and Philippine plates converging. National Geographic Headquarters Learn more about environmental hazards with this curated resource collection. If you have questions about licensing content on this page, please contact ngimagecollection@natgeo.com for more information and to obtain a license. Kobe, Japan, 1995 (MEDC) On 17th January 1995, an earthquake struck Kobe, a heavily populated urban area in Japan. If you have questions about how to cite anything on our website in your project or classroom presentation, please contact your teacher. The January 17, 1995 Hyogoken-Nanbu earthquake of magnitude 7.2 in JMA scale (Mw = 6.9), which struck Kobe, Japan and its surrounding area was the most severe earthquake to affect that region this century. By signing up for this email, you are agreeing to news, offers, and information from Encyclopaedia Britannica. Taking into consideration the entire Kobe and Aum Tokyo scenarios together with the earlier, possibly Aum-related, fireball-explosion-earthquake events of 28 May 1993 at Banjawarn, Western Australia, one is left with a very strong impression of a serious "EM fire" underlying the visible "dark plume of smoke" that rose over Kobe. Most of the largest earthquakes in Japan are caused by subduction of the Philippine Sea Plate or Pacific Plate, with mechanisms that involve either energy released within the subducting plate or the accumulation and sudden release of stress in the overlying plate. Kobe Earthquake Causes Of course, the Kobe Earthquake cause is natural and out of human hands. The 1995 Kobe earthquake was the worst to hit Japan since the 1923 Kanto earthquake, which had an estimated Richter magnitude of 7.9 and resulted in nearly 143,000 deaths, primarily due to fire. The Rights Holder for media is the person or group credited. Omissions? This article was most recently revised and updated by, https://www.britannica.com/event/Kobe-earthquake-of-1995, Tokyo-Yokohama (Great Kantō) earthquake of 1923. Magnitude of the Kobe Earthquake. Join our community of educators and receive the latest information on National Geographic's resources for you and your students. One of the most devastating earthquakes takes place in Japan! The active San Andreas fault runs through California and causes regular earthquakes, while the warm waters transported by the Gulf Stream can intensify a storm heading for South Carolina. system or order of a nation, state, or other political unit. The Earth’s crust is broken up into a series of massive sections called plates. Physical Causes The earthquake of Kobe at 546am on the 17th January 1995 was caused by the simple matter of the Philippine Plate being forced under the thicker and lighter continental plate the Eurasian. having to do with the physical formations of the Earth. Earthquake Kobe Japan 1995 . Our editors will review what you’ve submitted and determine whether to revise the article. When those plates scrape against each other and cause an earthquake, the results can be deadly and devastating. Earth’s tectonic plates fit together in a jigsaw puzzle of plate boundaries. 1 a) When did the Kobe earthquake occur? Ban went to the city in February, and by the end of the summer his relief work had brought 22 paper-tube cabins to shelter some of those who had lost their homes and a “paper…. Navigate parenthood with the help of the Raising Curious Learners podcast. For information on user permissions, please read our Terms of Service. Earthquakes in Kobe Japan are a result of Japan’s geographic position near fault lines and moving tectonic plates in the Pacific ocean. She or he will best know the preferred format. The Great Hanshin Earthquake. On the other hand, the Kobe region was thought to be fairly safe in terms of seismic activity. Sustainability Policy |  Otherwise, the deeper part and the shallower part of the Rokko fault sytems might generate different series of characteristic earthquakes. The Kobe Earthquake of January 17, 1995 might not be a characteristic event on the Rokko fault system but an episodic event on subsidiary faults. Teach your students about plate tectonics using these classroom resources. Encyclopaedia Britannica's editors oversee subject areas in which they have extensive knowledge, whether from years of experience gained by working on that content or via study for an advanced degree.... Building knocked off its foundation by the January 1995 earthquake in Kōbe, Japan. the sudden shaking of Earth's crust caused by the release of energy along fault lines or from volcanic activity. Get exclusive access to content from our 1768 First Edition with your subscription. In the aftermath of the Kōbe disaster, roads, bridges, and buildings were reinforced against another earthquake, and the national government revised its disaster response policies (its response to the 2004 quake in Niigata prefecture was much faster and more effective). Kobe, Japan is near 3 tectonic plates (great big slabs of the earths crust that move around due to the convection currents massive circuits of lava under the surface of the earth.) Regions are the basic units of geography. An emergency transportation network was also devised, and evacuation centres and shelters were set up in Kōbe by the Hyōgo prefectural government. Kobe earthquake On January 17th, 1995, Japan was woken at 5:46am by its largest ever recorded earthquake. Port and waterfront facilities in Kobe, Japan, suffered extensive damage due to liquefaction during the 1995 Kobe earthquake. The quake caused Awaji island to be lifted in the north by 1.5metres. The movements of these plates can build mountains or cause volcanoes to erupt. If a media asset is downloadable, a download button appears in the corner of the media viewer. The magnitude 7.2 earthquake in Kobe, Japan has resulted in extensive damage and a shocking number of fatalities and injuries. This is because the physical conditions in each place are different. According to official statistics, 5,472 people were killed, and over 400,000 were injured. Portions of the Hanshin Expressway linking Kōbe and Ōsaka also collapsed or were heavily damaged during the earthquake. The quake cost more than $100 billion in damage, and the Kobe government spent years construct ing new facilities to attract back the 50,000 people who left after the quake. The Great Hanshin earthquake, or the Kobe earthquake as it is more commonly known overseas, was an earthquake in Japan that measured 7.2 on the Japanese Scale. Its estimated death toll of 6,400 made it the worst earthquake to hit Japan since the Tokyo-Yokohama (Great Kantō) earthquake of 1923, which had killed more than 140,000. This is the deadliest tsunami since the 2004 magnitude 9.1 Sumatra earthquake and tsunami caused nearly 230,000 deaths and $10 billion in damage. More importantly, the fact that Kobe earthquake has been listed as ‘the costliest natural disaster to befall any single country’ speaks volumes about the damage this earthquake caused to the Japanese economy. You cannot download interactives. The earthquake caused 5100 deaths, mainly in Kobe. 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