The 2004 tsunami was the biggest in the Indian Ocean in some 600 years, according to a new report.
The tsunami that killed 230,000 people in 2004 was the biggest in the Indian Ocean in some 600 years, two new geological studies suggest.
The work appears in Thursday’s issue of the journal Nature. Two research teams report that by digging pits and taking core samples in Thailand and northern Sumatra, they found evidence that the previous comparably large tsunami struck between the years 1300 and 1400.
The researchers found deposits of sand that were apparently left by the waves, and estimated their age with carbon dating of associated plant debris.
The December, 2004, disaster killed people in 14 countries. Waves more than 30 metres tall struck northern Sumatra and deposited sand more than 1.5 kilometres inland, researchers said.
In Thailand, the waves also ran that far inland and left deposits of sand some five to 20 centimetres thick.
The 26 December tsunami was the worst natural disaster to ever strike Thailand, causing loss of life as well as major damage to property, the environment and the economy. The severe impact on the natural environment in turn had serious consequences on the fishing and tourism industries and, therefore, thousands of families’ livelihoods.
|No. people killed||5,395|
|No. people missing||2,817|
2,248 foreign nationals
|Bodies still unidentified||1,650|
|No. of affected people||58,550|
(loss of one or both parents)
|Lost livelihoods in fisheries||30,000|
|Fishing boats destroyed or damaged||7,500|
|Lost livelihoods in tourism||120,000+|
|Houses destroyed or badly damaged||4,806|
|Estimated value of damages|
(not. inc. housing)
|353.4 million USD|
|Thai Government assistance /compensation|
(as of 01 September 2005)
|1.06 billion USD|
(inc. budget contributions, Prime Minister’s Office, bank credit)
|Relief Fund for Disaster Victims||31.75 million USD|
|UN emergency phase relief assistance||2.6 million USD|
|UN recovery programming|
(till mid 2006)
|38.3 million USD|