Sunday, December 19, 2010

Top 10 Natural Disaster in 2010 - Review

1. Haiti Earthquake – 12 Jan 2010

The 2010 Haiti earthquake was a catastrophic magnitude 7.0 Mw earthquake, with an epicentre near the town of Léogâne, approximately 25 km (16 miles) west of Port-au-Prince, Haiti's capital. The earthquake occurred at 16:53 local time (21:53UTC) on Tuesday, 12 January 2010. By 24 January, at least 52 aftershocks measuring 4.5 or greater had been recorded. An estimated three million people were affected by the quake; the Haitian government reported that an estimated 230,000 people had died, 300,000 had been injured and 1,000,000 made homeless. They also estimated that 250,000 residences and 30,000 commercial buildings had collapsed or were severely damaged.

The earthquake caused major damage in Port-au-Prince, Jacmel and other settlements in the region. Many notable landmark buildings were significantly damaged or destroyed, including the Presidential Palace, the National Assembly building, the Port-au-Prince Cathedral, and the main jail. Among those killed were Archbishop of Port-au-Prince Joseph Serge Miot, and opposition leader Micha Gaillard. The headquarters of the United Nations Stabilization Mission in Haiti (MINUSTAH), located in the capital, collapsed, killing many, including the Mission's Chief.

2. Iceland Volcano – 14 Apr 2010

The 2010 eruptions of E15 are a timeline of volcanic events at Eyjafjöll in Iceland which, although relatively small for volcanic eruptions, caused enormous disruption to air travel across western and northern Europe over an initial period of six days in December 2009. Additional localised disruption continued into May 2010. The eruption was declared officially over in October 2010, when snow on the glacier did not melt.

Seismic activity started at the end of 2009 and gradually increased in intensity until on 20 March 2010, a small eruption started rated as a 1 on the Volcanic Explosivity Index.

Beginning on 14 April 2010, the eruption entered a second phase and created an ash cloud that led to the closure of most of Europe's IFR airspace from 15 until 20 April 2010. Consequently, a very high proportion of flights within, to, and from Europe were cancelled, creating the highest level of air travel disruption since the Second World War.

The second phase of the eruption started on 14 April 2010 and resulted in an estimated 250 million cubic metres (330,000,000 cu yd) (¼ km3) of ejected tephra. The ash plume rose to a height of approximately 9 kilometres (30,000 ft), which rates the explosive power of the eruption as a 4 on the Volcanic Explosivity Index.

By 21 May 2010, the second eruption phase had subsided to the point that no further lava or ash was being produced.

By the morning of 24 May 2010, the view from the web camera installed on Þórólfsfell showed only a plume of water vapour surrounded by a blueish haze caused by the emission of sulphurous gases.

Due to the large quantities of dry volcanic ash lying on the ground, surface winds frequently lifted up an "ash mist" that significantly reduced visibility and made web camera observation of the volcano impossible.

By the evening of 6 June 2010, a small, new crater had opened up on the west side of the main crater from which explosive activity was observed with the emission of small quantities of ash.[4] Seismic data showed that the frequency and intensity of earth tremors still exceeded the levels observed before the eruption, therefore scientists at the Icelandic Meteorological Office (IMO) and the Institute of Earth Sciences, University of Iceland (IES) continued to monitor the volcano.

3. Chile Earthquake – 15 May 2010

The 2010 Chile earthquake occurred off the coast of the Maule Region of Chile on February 27, 2010, at 03:34 local time (06:34 UTC), rating a magnitude of 8.8 on the moment magnitude scale, and lasting up to 90 seconds.It was felt strongly in six Chilean regions (from Valparaíso in the north to Araucanía in the south), that together make up 80 percent of the country's population. The cities experiencing the strongest shaking—IX (Ruinous) on the Mercalli intensity scale—were Arauco and Coronel, Chile. The earthquake was felt in the capital Santiago at Mercalli intensity scale VIII (Destructive).Tremors were felt in many Argentine cities, including Buenos Aires, Córdoba, Mendoza and La Rioja Tremors were felt as far north as the city of Ica in southern Peru (approx. 2400 km). The earthquake triggered a tsunami which devastated several coastal towns in south-central Chile and damaged the port at Talcahuano. Tsunami warnings were issued in 53 countries, causing minor damage in the San Diego area of California and in the Tōhoku region of Japan, where damage to the fisheries business was estimated at ¥6.26 billion (USD$66.7 million). The earthquake also generated a blackout that affected 93 percent of the country's population and which went on for several days in some locations. President Michelle Bachelet declared a "state of catastrophe" and sent military troops to take control of the most affected areas. The latest death toll as of May 15, 2010 is 521 victims.

4. Pakistan Floods – July 2010

The 2010 Pakistan floods began in July 2010 following heavy monsoon rains in the Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, Sindh, Punjab and Balochistan regions of Pakistan and affected the Indus River basin. At one point, approximately one-fifth of Pakistan's total land area was underwater. According to Pakistani government data the floods directly affected about 20 million people, mostly by destruction of property, livelihood and infrastructure, with a death toll of close to 2,000.

5.Guatemala Sinkhole – May 2010

Guatemala was hit hard by Tropical Storm Agatha, which CNN reportskilled at least 115 people in Central America. While we hope it does not overshadow the loss of human life, this awe-inspiring sinkhole that appeared in Guatemala City’s Zone 2 may well become the storm’s most-remembered consequence.

A sinkhole is a natural topographic hole that appears when the ground is peeled off by water. According to Wikipedia, “Sinkholes may vary in size from less than a metre to several hundred metres both in diameter and depth, and vary in form from soil-lined bowls to bedrock-edged chasms.”

While some have wondered whether these photos are real or fake due to their almost perfectly cylindrical shape, they appear to be real: Both were posted by the Guatemala government’s official Twitter feed. Click on either one to see it in higher resolution.

6.Machu Picchu Landslide - 27 Jan 2010

At least two people have lost their lives in landslides in the Sacred Valley near Machu Picchu.

7. Nashville Floods – 3 May 2010

Nashville as the community attempted to bounce back from widespread flooding that has affected thousands of area residents, including several country music artists. Still, the high water will be creating problems for weeks to come for locals and visitors to Music City.
Overflow from the Cumberland River in downtown Nashville has heavily impacted Lower Broadway from the riverfront to Second Avenue and caused flooding in two major buildings -- the Country Music Hall of Fame and Museum and the Schermerhorn Symphony Center. Northeast of downtown Nashville, flooding of the river near Briley Parkway has hit the Grand Ole Opry House and the Gaylord Opryland Hotel.

8.China Earthquake – 13 Apr 2010

The China Earthquake Networks Centre put the biggest shock at magnitude 7.1, although the US Geological Survey put it at 6.9.

At least 400 people have been killed and more have been injured or trapped in rubble after a series of earthquakes in north-west China.

Officials said more than 10,000 people were injured and six quakes hit Yushu county, Qinghai province.

9. East Coast Blizzard – Feb 2010

The state's largest city Minneapolis was under a blanket of white 17 inches (43 cm) deep, the worst snowfall to hit the city in more than 19 years and the fifth-biggest on record.

10. Russia Wildfires - July 2010

The 2010 Russian wildfires were several hundred wildfires that broke out across Russia, primarily in the west, starting in late July 2010, due to record temperatures (the hottest recorded summer in Russian history) and drought in the region. Russian President Dmitry Medvedev declared a state of emergency in seven regions for the fires, while 28 other regions were under a state of emergency due to crop failures caused by the Russian drought.[5] The fires cost roughly $15 billion USD in damages.


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