2016 In Review: The Biggest Natural Disasters in 2016
The year of 2016 will soon end in the next few days. It would be better to take a look at natural catastrophes that happened throughout the year. There were the snow storm, flood, and so on. However, this year was also marked as the year of earthquakes as some parts of the world were shaken by seismic activity. Here is the list of natural disasters that happened in 2016.
Winter Storm Jonas: It was called "The Storm of The Century". The U.S Northeast was heavily affected by the snowstorm. Airports near Baltimore saw its snow height reaching 74 cm while the town of Glengary, West Virginia got the highest snow, reaching 107 cm. At least 49 people died due to car accidents, hypothermia, carbon monoxide poisoning, as reported by NBC.
Quake in Taiwan: a 6.4-magnitude earthquake rocked Taiwan. The quake killed 116 people, most of the fatalities were caused by the collapse of a high-rise tower, according to local disaster response team.
California Wildfire: In August, California was blazed by a summer wildfire. 565,070 acres (229,000 hectares) had been burned by 6,938 fires as of Dec. 11, based on data from the California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection.
Flood in Louisiana: While California was affected by summer wildfire, Louisiana was inundated by flooding. Even the Red Cross said the flood was the worst disaster after Hurricane Sandy. There were at least six rivers that broke a record on the water level. The Amite River, for example, saw its water level reaching 1.8 meters. 13 people died from the flood.
Italy's and Myanmar's Earthquake: Still in August, Central Italy was shaken by a 6.2-magnitude quake. The tremor was even felt in Rome. At least 240 were killed. A few hours later, Myanmar was rocked by a 6.8-magnitude quake. The tremor was felt in Thailand, Bangladesh, and India. One person died.
Hurricane Matthew: Hurricane Matthew devastated the Carribean and the Southeast U.S, leading to the massive flood in North Carolina. The death toll reached 43 in the U.S and hundreds in the Carribean.
New Zealand's Quake: In November, New Zealand was trembled by a powerful 7.8-magnitude quake. The epicenter of the quake was located in northeast of Christchurch, but the quake was also felt in the country's capital Wellington. Just two hours after the main tremor, tsunami waves over 3 meters hit the coast. This is the second powerful quake that hit the tiny country. In 2011, New Zealand was hit by a 6.3 quake that killed 185 people and destroyed 100,000 buildings.
Fukushima's Quake: Just five years after the deadly quake, Japan was rocked again by a 6.9-quake on November 21, 2016. Actually, the quake was measured at 7.3 but later downgraded to 6.9, according to the USGS. This quake triggered a local authority to issue a tsunami warning.
Aceh's Earthquake: In December, Indonesia's province of Aceh was rocked by a 6.5-quake. Around 100 were killed and 136 were injured. Thousands were left homeless due to the quake. No tsunami warning was issued, but local residents were traumatic over a tsunami that hit the region in 2004.
In March this year, a 7.8 quake also hit Mentawai Island, West Sumatera. Based on Indonesia's weather agency (BMKG), the quake was measured at 8.3 and a minor tsunami was observed in the nearby locations. However, no fatalities were reported as local residents were evacuated in a higher place.
Solomon Island's Quake: Still in early December, a 7.8 earthquake shook the Solomon Island. The quake was initially measured at 8, but later dropped to 7.8. Soon after the quake, a tsunami warning was issued for Hawaii, but then the Pacific Tsunami Warning Center stated no tsunami threat affecting the island.
Chile's Quake: Christmas in Chile was disrupted by a 7.7 magnitude quake that hit off the coast of southern Chile. A tsunami warning was issued but later lifted. Around 4,000 were evacuated though no reported fatalities from the disaster, as reported by BBC. The quake also damaged bridges and roads, but it seems the damage was not that severe. Chile experienced a deadly quake in February 2010, when an 8.8-magnitude quake killed more than 700 people.