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Sichan Earthquake 2013

Page history last edited by Gillian westerman 8 years ago

A magnitude 7.0 earthquake hit Lushan, Sichuan Province on April 22, 2013 just 5 years after a devastating earthquake in the same region. In 2008 a 7.8 magnitude earthquake killed approximately 80,000. In 2013 a 7.0 quake killed approximately 200.



Sichuan earthquake

2008 -The Sichuan Province is a very active tectonic area due to the northward indentation of the Indian plate into the Tibetan crust after the collision between the Indian and Eurasian plates which induced uplift and deformation of the Tibetan Plateau.

The earthquake was caused by movement along a thrust fault located on Longmenshan Fault (yellow line). The deformation of the rocks in this region was caused by the the collision between the Indian and Eurasian tectonic (crustal) plates and the continued movement of the plates relative to each other.



Research task: 

1) Why is this region and it's people vulnerable to seismic hazards:


a) Physical reasons - find out about:

  • the plate boundaries here, include diagrams and an explanation of the processes at work to cause earthquakes in Sichuan
  • how frequent are earthquakes and what magnitudes are they?
  • Is the region vulnerable to any other hazards that may increase the impacts?


b) Human reasons - find out about the:

  • economy
  • infrastructure and buildings
  • communications
  • technology and education
  • political structure
  • culture
  • populations centres


and suggest how these may impact on the nature of the disaster and the response to it.


2) The Earthquakes of 2008 and 2013.


a) Detail the specific causes of the earthquakes. Include the plate/fault movement, the foci, epicentres, magnitudes

b) Compare the impacts of these earthquakes.

c) Comment on the similarities and differences in the impacts.

d) Examine the responses (immediate and long term as well as national and international) to the earthquakes and comment on the similarities and differences.



There are a number of good links, try these as starting points (there are further links to investigate on each of these pages):

Watch this



BBC News

The Guardian

The telegraph


In pictures 2013

In pictures 2008


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