Earthquake Mathematics Project
By: Amanda Hauser
Magnitude 1 to 2.99
In general these earthquakes are felt by very few people in certain circumstances. Some instances where they may be felt are in the higher floors of buildings. They may swing lightly hung objects but rarely do any damage to anything. There isn't very much data about them because they don't cause any damage that needs to be recorded. These occur very often, sometimes even as much as 900,000 times a year. There was an earthquake in Perry, Oklahoma on 10-7-2014. It was a magnitude of 2.6. There was very little damage and hardly anyone even felt it.
Magnitude 3 to 4.99
In general these earthquakes are felt by many people and may rock cars. There is very little damage with these earthquakes. They may make dishes or pictures fall and the walls may make a cracking noise but they damage is very minor. There isn't a lot of data about these earthquakes because they cause very minor damage but they do have them on record and they do scare a lot of people. These earthquakes are pretty common and happen around 30,000 times a year. There was an earthquake in Lake Tahoe that occurred on 9-10-2014. It was a magnitude 3.5. It was felt by a lot of people and frightened some. It didn't cause much damage and it was a couple of miles deep.
Magnitude 5 to 6.99
In general these earthquakes are felt by everyone and frighten a lot of people. They do damage to fragile objects like dishes, windows and sometimes even plaster. They can also move heavy furniture but don't do a lot of damage. There is not a lot of information on these earthquakes but there is more than some of the others. These only happen about 600 times a year. There was a magnitude 6 earthquake in Pakistan on 8-31-2014. There wasn't any serious damage but it did frighten a lot of people.
Magnitude 7 to 8.99
In general these earthquakes are felt by everyone and are pretty major. They cause a lot of damage especially in poorly built buildings. In better buildings there is less damage but still some damage. Heavy furniture is overturned and chimneys may crack. There is a lot of data about this level because they cause a lot of damage that needs to be recorded and they happen often enough to study on a regular basis. These earthquakes are often broadcast worldwide and if they are bad enough they sometimes send in relief funds. These only happen about 20 times a year. There was an 8.5 magnitude earthquake in Anchorage, Alaska in 1964. It caused a lot of damage throughout the miles around the epicenter. The earthquake didn't kill nearly as many people as the tsunami that it caused. The tsunamis that followed after the earthquake did the most damage.
Magnitude 9 and up
In general these earthquakes are felt by everyone and kill a lot of people. These are the major earthquakes and are the largest to ever happen. There is a lot of damage and a lot of people are killed. These are strong enough to even knock over buildings. There is a lot of data about this magnitude because of all of the damage that they do. They don't happen very often so when they do a lot of countries send relief efforts and the scientists do a lot of testing and research about them. These only happen about once every 5 to 10 years. The largest earthquake ever recorded was in Chile in 1960 and it was a magnitude 9.5. There was a lot of damage and it took hundreds of millions of dollars to repair all of the damage just to Chile. There was also a lot of damage in the surrounding countries and even all the way to Hawaii. There were a lot of after affects including tsunamis and more smaller earthquakes afterwards.
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