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Top 10 of the Most Devastating Natural Distaters in the World

By Nyla Abdul-Mumin and Shelby Covert

#1 Yangtze River peaks in China - Aug 18, 1931
history.com

#1 Yangtze River peaks in China - Aug 18, 1931

In August of 1931, the most devastating natural disaster in history occurred in China. During this horrific time, the flood killed 3.7 million people and drove 500 thousand people from their homes. This was influenced by the destruction of crops and increase in disease, causing citizens to starve and perish. This great and deadly flood also polluted the Yangtze River. We chose this as our #1 Natural disaster because of the substantial amount of deaths and how much of an impact it had on surviving citizens who had to leave their homes. Many believe that "much of the disaster could have been averted if the flood-control measures had been followed closely."

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#2: Shaanxi Earthquake     - January 23, 1556
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#2: Shaanxi Earthquake - January 23, 1556

In January of 1556, the deadliest earthquake in history transpired in China. On this fateful day around 830,000 people lost their life to the Shaanxi earthquake with a magnitude between 8.0 to 8.3. This natural disaster is ranked number two in this curation because of the death toll and destruction of the land. In this tragedy about half the population of the city lost their lives. All buildings in a 300 mile radius were destroyed and left 60 ft deep crevices in the earth. From reading this article I have learned that Earthquakes are proven to be catastrophic and impacts many.

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#3 The Great Bhola Cyclone of 1970
hurricanescience.org

#3 The Great Bhola Cyclone of 1970

The Great Bhola Cyclone happened was the strongest storm in 1970 of the North Indian Ocean cyclone season. It holds the world record as the deadliest storm because it killed 300,000 to 500,000 people. About 85% of all homes in East Pakistan (Bangladesh today) were destroyed by this cyclone and 65% of the region's fishing industry was also destroyed. This ranked up about $490 million dollars of damage. When reading about this cyclone, we ranked this as #3 because of how much damage this cyclone did and over half of the homes being destroyed. Also, it was chosen because of how this country thrived and recovered from the damages. This article also impacted us as well when thinking about the people having to leave their homes and live somewhere else because their homes were destroyed.

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#4: 1976 Tangshan Earthquake
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#4: 1976 Tangshan Earthquake

On July 28 in 1976 an earthquake struck Tangshan, China. This earthquake measured between 7.8 and 8.2 on the Richter scale. This tragedy takes the fourth place in this ranked collection because it took the lives of 242,000 civilians, one third of the population. We chose this to be number four in our ranked collection because over 160,000 families were left homeless and 4,000 children were left orphaned. Also this 23 second quake ignited fires, leveled buildings and destroyed roads and rails throughout the town. In addition to the destruction because Tangshan is an industrial city the factories explosives and poisonous gases were ignited and was spread adding to the number of lives lost. The Chinese government was unprepared and refused help from foreign countries leaving many effected people to die from lack of medical care and caused many citizens to loot the town for supplies. This article spoke to us because of the lack of care from the government for its citizens and the countries destruction.

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#5: Earthquake and Tsunami - 2004
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#5: Earthquake and Tsunami - 2004

This Tsunami was presented on all news channels in the U.S and it impacted everyone worldwide when hearing about it. The earthquake began and had a 9.3 magnitude causing the waves to be 83 feet high. When the waves hit land, it killed 230,000 people, left 500,000 homeless with 1/3 of the them being children. Within the first 18 months there was $7 billion in damage. Ten years after the tragic incident in 2014 did effected countries, such as Indonesia, recover. It was tough choice to choose this natural disaster as #5 because many were still affected especially the children, but it's impact on the society as a whole didn't quite compare to the previously ranked disasters.

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#6 Massive earthquake strikes Haiti -                                         Jan 12, 2010
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#6 Massive earthquake strikes Haiti - Jan 12, 2010

On January 12, 2010 the 6th most deadliest natural disaster occurred in Haiti. This earthquake measured a magnitude of 7.0 and was the strongest quake in more than 200 years. This earthquake made number six on this ranked collection because it took over 200,000 peoples lives and left an excessive amount of people homeless, 895,000 to be exact. Also this tragedy took place we when were old enough to know the impact of these disasters. Poorly constructed buildings crumbled with little resistance and hospitals, schools, and roads were unavailable for use due to the rubble blocking them. Multiple bodies of the victims were dumped into shared graves hurriedly because of fear of disease.This article impacted us because when destruction hits a place that already has very little it may seem unimportant to many but its very difficult to those living there. Even after the first year anniversary and many donations people were still left homeless and debris remained because its one of the poorest countries.

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#7: Hurricane Katrina - 2005
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#7: Hurricane Katrina - 2005

Hurricane Katrina, was at one point a Category Five storm that caused millions of dollars in damage and left a death toll in the thousands. Millions of people were left homeless and ranked 6 in overall in strength of recorded hurricanes. We ranked it s 7 in this curation because even after 10 years of the damage done, they still have not fully recovered from the hurricane. This hurricane was the costliest of many, but not as close of a death toll as the others ranked in this curation. Knowing that many people have lost their homes because of this strike impacted me the most and caused us to rank it as last because of that. It was heartbreaking to know that many families and children will be struggling to get back on their feet.

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#8 Tambora Volcanic eruption - Apr 17, 1815
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#8 Tambora Volcanic eruption - Apr 17, 1815

On Apr 17, 1815 a volcanic eruption occurred in Indonesia. This tragedy belongs in our ranked collection as number seven because it killed almost 100,000 directly and indirectly and its effects were known worldwide. 10,000 of the victims were killed during the blasts but over 80,000 were killed from the aftermath from starvation and disease. This eruption lead to climate changes all over the globe, this was known as the "year without summer" because the high amount of ash in the atmosphere reduced the temperature for the entire year. From the debris of the explosion a moderate tsunami developed adding to the destruction. The eruption was so powerful that it decreased its size of 14,000 feet high to 9,000 feet.

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#9: Coringa, Indian Cyclone - 1839
hurricanescience.org

#9: Coringa, Indian Cyclone - 1839

Although it was never really rebuilt or recovered, This Cyclone was ranked as 9 because it's overall loss didn't compare to the others. This was one of the top deadliest natural disasters that deserved to be ranked because it's damage count was larger than just a normal tornado, earthquake, and hurricane. In this cyclone, 300,000 people were killed and 20,000 vessels were lost at sea. This cyclone did not have as much of an impact on us as much as Hurricane Katrina or even the Great Bhola cyclone because of the difference in time period and how things functioned then, but it's still ranked amongst many of the great natural disasters.

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#10: The Tri-State Tornado of 1925
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#10: The Tri-State Tornado of 1925

Number 10 of this ranked collection goes to the Tri-State tornado of 1925. This deadly twister traveled crossed Missouri, Illinois, and Indian; a total of 219 miles and 3 hours on the ground. This natural disaster took the lives of 695 people and injured 13,000. Majority of the 695 casualties were killed in Illinois were it hit the hardest. The damage totaled in 17 million dollars worth of property damage throughout the three states. This tornado that happened March 18th, 1925 is still the record holder for the longest track, most deaths, and most injuries in history. This event impacted us because it occurred in the state we live in and because of the amount of destruction it caused to the people affected.

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