• Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

The Kobe earthquake of 1995

Extracts from this document...


The Kobe earthquake of 1995 Kobe is a heavily populated urban area. It is here that disaster struck in 1995 when an earthquake of magnitude 7.2 hit the area. It was a major disaster in a MEDC where the modern buildings had been earthquake proofed. Many of the city's residents had been unaware of the chances of an earthquake taking place. The epicentre of the earthquake was located on the island of Awaji at 34.6 N 135.0 E. The earthquake had taken place because of a subduction zone on the plate margin. The type of margin where the Philippine plate and the Eurasian plate meet is a destructive margin. This means that the Philippine plate (Oceanic plate) moved under the Eurasian plate (continental plate) causing uplifting and folding of the ground that the plate was on. The ground moved 7 inches in horizontal shaking in this earthquake, and 4 inches in the vertical direction. This is the greatest recording of plate movement in Japan. The ground movement was even greater in Awaji Island where the ground moved 5 feet 7 inches (170 cm), with a vertical slip of 4 feet 3 inches (130 cm). ...read more.


Breweries had to close because the beer couldn't be fermented. Metal industries had to stop working because of the cut in gas and water. Car companies had to cut the production of cars, and supermarkets run out of stock as the crowds flocked to get food. Transportation problems meant that new stock had to come in by helicopter. * Extra jobs were made when the rebuilding of factories and houses was started. * Many people permanently moved away. Precautions Taken Most of the modern buildings in Kobe had been earthquake proofed in three ways. Some buildings had been built with a concrete weight on top which moved in the opposite direction of the earthquake. Other buildings had rubber shock absorbers in the foundations to allow the building to rock back and forth and up and down without causing too much damage apart from some falling books etc. Some buildings had cross-bracings which allowed the building to twist and turn so it can move with the earthquake. The causes The Kobe earthquake was caused by a destructive margin along which the Philippine plate moved under the Eurasian plate. ...read more.


To examine the damage we must consider three factors. These factors are the strength of an earthquake, the time of the earthquake and the type of rock the settlement is on. The strength of the earthquake was quite small compared to other earthquakes in Japan. It was 5.46 am so everyone would have been asleep. Kobe had been built on variousness of ground hardness. For example part of Kobe was built on solid land from the Rokko Mountain and another part of Kobe near to the coast was built on soft ground reclaimed from the sea. This means that the buildings on soft ground would have collapsed more easily as their foundations would have been uprooted. This is also what took place at the 1985 Mexico earthquake and at the 1989 San Francisco earthquake. So why was so much damage caused compared to other earthquakes? Fire is the main reason that many of the buildings in Kobe were destroyed. The fire was caused by the gas mains being fractured and inmost places exploding. The wooden buildings that were in the Central Business District caught fire and therefore became a fire hazard. This caused the surviving modern buildings to catch fire and collapse. This is what caused the most damage. ...read more.

The above preview is unformatted text

This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our GCSE Physical Geography section.

Found what you're looking for?

  • Start learning 29% faster today
  • 150,000+ documents available
  • Just £6.99 a month

Not the one? Search for your essay title...
  • Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

See related essaysSee related essays

Related GCSE Physical Geography essays

  1. Marked by a teacher

    Why did so many people die in the Kobe Earthquake?

    4 star(s)

    This left thousands of people fearing for their safety to returning to their homes. The emergency services, strived, fought and battled to save as many people as they could. But unfortunately not all could be saved. Mrs Endo was one of the unlucky ones.

  2. Kobe and Haiti earthquake had many differences between the primary effects because in Haiti, ...

    In Haiti, Americans Red Cross raised 57,000 dollars in 24 hours. Many countries offered financial aids including UK. The UN increased relief appeal to 1.4 US billion dollars. Everyone donated millions of money to facilitate the underprivileged, helpless people in Haiti.

  1. 1906 San Francisco Earthquake

    Mendocino to the north, a distance of about 800 miles (1,300 km). The earthquake ruptured the northern third of the fault for a distance of 296 miles (477 km). A strong foreshock preceded the mainshock by about 20 to 25 seconds.

  2. Free essay

    Kobe Earthquake, Japan

    Even though many of the executives and staff members of Co-op Kobe were disaster victims themselves, they rushed to stores in order to provide suffering residents with food and commodities. Co-op Kobe also mobilized its trucks, which ordinarily deliver merchandise to HAN groups, to provide relief aid to all corners of the disaster-struck area.

  1. Kashmir Earthquake

    1,000 survivors in Islamabad, all survivors were forced to stay in temporary shelter (Tents, Refugee Camps); this then led to lack of shelter. There was then a lot of help via charities. A new organisation was set up called Kashmir Aid.

  2. To delimit the edge of the Central Business district of Nottingham along a transect ...

    The shape and layout of Nottingham was shown in the following models; Both these models were invented to be applied to any city, but they do not show the true shape of each city when applied to cities today. The main characteristics of the CBD * High number of pedestrians

  1. Physical Geography Earth revision notes

    These countries must reduce their 1990 carbon emissions levels by 5.2% by 2012 . This is a step to reducing emissions worldwide where all counties need to take part as gases are not contained by political boundaries . Carbon credits aim to identity an overall amount of emissions by allowing countries to trade in amounts .

  2. Earthquakes and volcanoes research

    Solid rock and stable soil are the best locations. Another way to reduce earthquake damage is to connect water, gas, and electric lines with flexible joints to keep pipes from cracking. The old saying, ?An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure? is quiet fitting to people who live in near earthquake prone areas.

  • Over 160,000 pieces
    of student written work
  • Annotated by
    experienced teachers
  • Ideas and feedback to
    improve your own work