Discuss the Statement: the Extent to Which Earthquakes Present a Hazard Depends on Where They Are Experienced.

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Geography 40 mark EQ question

Discuss the statement: The extent to which earthquakes present a hazard depends on where they are experienced.
(40 marks)

A Hazard is best defined as a situation that’s ‘a potential source of harm or adverse health effect on a person or persons’. An earthquake is a tectonic event which can be a huge hazard to people- particularly effecting areas of the earth around convergent, divergent and transform plate boundaries: in both MEDC’s and LEDC’s with equally force. Hazards earthquakes cause can be divided into two sub-categories: primary and secondary effects. Primary effects are the problems that are of direct result of the seismic waves, including effects such as liquefaction, tsunamis and landslides. Primary effects then lead to secondary effects; floods, fires, disease and even malnourishment. However a number of factors can dictate whether these effects present a hazard to people or not- location, whether in a MEDC or LEDC, can dictate the severity of the hazard.

To start, I want to highlight the difference in the primary effects of an earthquake. Comparing the factors like death and injuries- or social effects- and then the environmental effects in looking at the destruction of infrastructure experienced in varying parts of the world. To highlight this difference of place: using an EQ in a LEDC and one in a MEDC.
So looking at deaths and injuries we can see as an overall trend there tends to be more deaths caused form the initial seismic force of an earthquake in LEDCs. Gujarat in India felt the force of a 7.9 magnitude EQ and we can see that over 20,000 people died within the first day of the earthquake hitting. Gujarat was a hugely densely populated area of India comparatively with Northridge in LA. Although the 6.4 magnitude earthquake caused just 57 fatalities in Northridge- a huge contrast. A similar trend is…...

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