Presentation on theme: "Where is Japan? Japan is lies to the East of China and Korea in the Pacific Ocean. Japan lies on the so called “Pacific Ring of Fire”, an active area."— Presentation transcript:
Where is Japan? Japan is lies to the East of China and Korea in the Pacific Ocean. Japan lies on the so called “Pacific Ring of Fire”, an active area of tectonic activity that causes many of the worlds earthquakes and volcanoes. Each year Japan has around 2000 earthquakes, most of these are not powerful enough to cause any damage.
Eurasian Plate Philippine Plate Pacific Plate North American Plate Kobe Japan lies in the middle of four tectonic plates. The pressure of the plates has produced fault lines in Japan’s crust. The fault running through the Kobe area had not moved for 50 years and a huge amount of pressure had built up.
At 5.46am on the 17 th of January 1995, Kobe was struck by one of the strongest earthquakes to hit Japan in living memory. Measured around the world by seismographs, the earthquake measured 7.2 on the Richter Scale.
The Earthquake only lasted 20 seconds but the caused terrible human suffering and damage estimated at £80 billion. 190,000 buildings destroyed or damaged 90% of the port destroyed 14,690 injured 4,569 deaths82% schools damaged 12% industry destroyed300,000 people lost their homes 130km of Japan’s main rail system was closed
The primary effect of the earthquake was damage to buildings. Many older buildings collapsed completely. Wooden buildings in the poorer areas of Kobe were flattened as the walls could not support the heavy tile roofs. A number of tall buildings “pancaked” – walls gave way and each floor piled up on top of the one below.
The most devastating secondary effect was fire. Paraffin heaters and gas cookers set fire to buildings. The fires were also made worse by gas escaping from broken gas pipes and the fire services could not get to the fires due to blocked roads and burst water mains.