Seismic Case Study: Gorkha Flashcards Preview

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1
Q

Name my detailed earthquake case study

A

Gorkha earthquake, Nepal, 2015

2
Q

At what type of plate boundary did the Gorkha earthquake occur?

A

Destructive.

Eurasian plate subducts under Indian plate at 4-5cm per year.

3
Q

Name the mountain range created at the boundary between Eurasian and Indian plate

A

Himalayas

4
Q

Are large earthquakes common in Nepal?

A

No.

There are frequent minor quakes that release the energy in small amounts.

5
Q

What magnitude was the Gorkha earthquake, 2015?

A

7.8 mag.

6
Q

Where was the epicentre of the Gorkha earthquake, 2015? Why is this significant?

A

77km northwest of the capital, Kathmandu.

The population of Kathmandu was 2.8 million at the time.

7
Q

How deep was the focus?

A

15km underground

8
Q

Which countries were affected by the Gorkha earthquake?

A

Nepal
India
China
Bangladesh

9
Q

How many people were killed?

A

9000 deaths

10
Q

How many people were injured?

A

22,000 injured

11
Q

How many people were forced to leave their homes?

A

2.8 million displaced

12
Q

How many buildings were damaged / destroyed in Kathmandu and its surroundings?

A

600,000 buildings damaged/destroyed

13
Q

What was the cost of the initial damage?

A

$5 - $10 billion damage cost

14
Q

What were the secondary impacts of the Gorkha earthquake?

A

Landslide
Avalanche
Aftershocks

15
Q

Where was the avalanche triggered?

A

Mount Everest

16
Q

What did the avalanche on Mount Everest cause?

A

19 climbers died.

Hundreds more were stranded

17
Q

How many aftershocks occurred the next day? What were their magnitudes?

A

Two aftershocks.

Mag 6.6 and 6.7

18
Q
There was another aftershock a month later.
Location?
Magnitude?
Death toll?
Injured?
A

76km northeast of Kathmandu.
Magnitude 7.3.
>100 people killed.
1,900 injured.

19
Q

Give the social risks facing seismically active areas

A

• Building collapse -> deaths/injuries affect quality of life and ability to work.
• Destroyed homes -> homelessness.
• Damaged infrastructure -> people may be cut off and unable to reach a safe place.
• Destruction of heritage sites -> loss of tradition/culture.
Eg Dharahara Tower and Basantapur Tower, Kathmandu were destroyed in Gorkha e.quake.
• Burst water pipes -> contaminate water.
• Disease.
• Nepal’s landslides -> blocked roads which delayed rescue efforts.

20
Q

Give the economic risks facing seismically active areas

A

• High damage costs.
Eg as much as $10 billion due to Gorkha = almost half of Nepal’s GDP.
• Injury/loss of livelihood -> people are unable to work -> loss of income.
• In coastal areas tsunamis may occur -> more destruction.

21
Q

Give the environmental risks facing seismically active areas

A

• Built landscape destroyed.
• Important natural / human landmarks may be lost.
• Gas pipe explosions -> fires that damage woodland.
• Landslides due to unstable ground.
Eg several landslides and rock fall in mountainous areas of Nepal -> blocked roads.
• Tsunamis may occur.

22
Q

How did Nepal respond to the Gorkha earthquake?

A

Declared state of emergency.
Nepalese army assisted in rescue / clear up.
Government asked for international aid.
‘Tent cities’ were created due to large scale homelessness.

23
Q

How did the UN respond to the Gorkha earthquake?

A

UN created “Nepal Earthquake 2015 Flash Appeal” fund.

Raised $330 million in two weeks.

24
Q

How did the UK respond to the Gorkha earthquake?

A

British organisation: Search And Rescue Assistance in Disasters (SARAID).
Sent a team of experts with 1.5 tonnes of specialist equipment for cutting through concrete and steel.
They also brought own tents and food, so as not to drain local resources.

25
Q

How was technology used to aid with relief efforts?

A

‘Crisis mapping’ and ‘crowd sourced’ data collection allowed the analysis of large quantities of data -> identify where to send most aid to.

Facebook ‘Safety check’ and Google ‘Person finder’ -> people could “check-in” as safe / locate missing people online.

26
Q

Give an example of an organisation that helps to prepare people for earthquakes in Nepal

A

Nepal Red Cross Society works in 66 communities…

  • teach people how to identify local hazards and risks.
  • train emergency responders in first aid and search and rescue.
  • develop community disaster plans.
27
Q

Earthquake damage investigations were carried out 6-11 days after the Gorkha earthquake.
What did the results show?

A

Buildings made of stone / brick, with no consideration of seismic resistance were damaged the most.
Reinforced concrete buildings were largely undamaged.

-> importance of earthquake-proof structural design.

28
Q

How did the Nepal Red Cross Society help with the Gorkha earthquake?

A

8000 staff and volunteers.
Carried out evacuations, first aid, search and rescue.
Provided relief items and emotional support to affected people.
Cash grants to >50,000 families who lost homes / businesses.