On March 11, 2011, the generally stable earth moved in the Japan
Trench between the Eurasian and the Pacific Plates just off the coast of
Sendai, Japan. The magnitude 8.9 earthquake triggered a 30-foot
tsunami that swept the coastline, carrying boats and buildings, houses
and factories far inland, then drawing them out to sea again, together
with over 12,000 people--mothers, fathers, children,
grandparents--gone without warning.
Earthquakes also shook New Zealand, Turkey and Washington, D.C.
EARTH / WATER
A 6.3 magnitude earthquake
struck Christchurch, New
Zealand on February 22, killing
181 people. It was followed by
a 5.2 and a 6.0 earthquake June
12, which destroyed buildings
damaged in the previous quake.
An aid worker searching for survivors
of an earthquake in Van, Turkey, was
among over 600 victims of two
earthquakes in October and
Hundreds were killed and 200,000 left homeless when
floods struck Pakistan's southern Sindh province in
In November, flood waters in northern Thailand poured into
the capital, Bangkok, killing some 800 people and impacting
factory output and prices on consumer goods in Japan and the
United States. Thailand supplies auto parts and computer
D.C. office workers react to shaking.