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What is the chance of a tsunami in Japan?

1. Introduction

Tsunamis are a natural phenomenon that can cause immense destruction, especially in coastal areas. Japan is one of the countries that is most vulnerable to tsunami activity, due to its location in the Ring of Fire and its numerous coastal cities. In this article, we will explore what the chance of a tsunami in Japan is and what can be done to mitigate the risk.

2. How Tsunamis Occur

Tsunamis occur when there is an underwater disturbance, such as an earthquake or landslide, which causes a large wave or series of waves to form and travel across the ocean. These waves can reach heights of up to 30 meters (100 feet) and can travel at speeds of up to 800 kilometers per hour (500 miles per hour).

Japanese Snack Box

3. The Risk of Tsunamis in Japan

Japan is located on the Pacific Ring of Fire, which is an area where tectonic plates meet and create seismic activity such as earthquakes and volcanoes. This makes Japan particularly vulnerable to tsunamis as it has experienced numerous devastating tsunamis throughout its history. In addition, many of Japan’s major cities are located on the coast, making them particularly vulnerable to tsunami damage if they were to occur again.

4. Historical Tsunamis in Japan

The most famous historical tsunami in Japan was the Great East Japan Earthquake on March 11th 2011 which caused a devastating tsunami that killed over 15000 people and caused billions of dollars worth of damage. Other significant historical tsunamis include the 1896 Meiji-Sanriku Earthquake which killed 22000 people and the 1707 Hōei Earthquake which killed around 10000 people.

5. Recent Tsunami Activity in Japan

In recent years, there have been several smaller tsunamis that have occurred along the Japanese coastline but none have been as destructive as those mentioned above. The most recent significant tsunami was on April 24th 2019 when a magnitude 6 earthquake struck off the coast of Fukushima prefecture resulting in a small tsunami reaching heights between 1-3 meters (3-10 feet).

6. What is Being Done to Mitigate the Risk?

In order to reduce the risk posed by tsunamis, Japanese authorities are investing heavily into research into early warning systems for earthquakes and tsunamis as well as improving infrastructure such as sea walls and dams that can help protect coastal areas from flooding caused by tsunamis.

7. What Can You Do To Prepare?

If you live near a coastal area or plan on visiting one it’s important to be aware of what you should do if there is an earthquake or potential tsunami warning issued by local authorities:

• Stay away from low lying areas such as beaches or riverside promenades
• Move away from shorelines towards higher ground immediately
• Follow instructions given by local authorities

8 Conclusion

Japan is highly prone to tsunamis due its location on the Pacific Ring of Fire and its many coastal cities that are at risk from flooding if a large enough wave were to occur again like those seen in 2011 or 1896.While there are steps being taken by authorities to mitigate this risk it’s important for individuals living near coastal areas or visiting them be aware of what they should do if an earthquake or potential tsunami warning occurs.

9 Resources

Tokoyama CR (2020) What Is The Chance Of A Tsunami In Japan? Retrieved from https://japaninsidersguideblog/what-the-chance-of-a-tsunami-in-japan/

JMA (2020) Earthquakes & Tsunami Warnings Retrieved from https://wwwjma/en/tsunami/warnings_e/indexhtml

What country has the highest chance of a tsunami?

According to, Japan has had a total record of tsunamis.

Can Japan predict tsunamis?

Most tsunamis are caused by underwater earthquakes. Fortunately Japan has one of the best earthquake early warning systems in the world. It detects earthquakes calculates earthquakes and sends alerts to more than a thousand seismographs across the country.

How likely is a tsunami?

Tsunamis cause damage or death near their source twice a year according to the Global Historical Tsunami Database. Tsunamis that cause damage or loss of life can occur about twice per decade on distant coasts (more than 1000 kilometers or 620 miles away).

Has a tsunami ever hit the US?

A huge tsunami has occurred in the United States and will no doubt happen again. Notable Pacific Coast earthquakes include Hawaii Alaska and the United States. It caused a tsunami to hit the west coast.

Where do 90% of tsunami occur?

the Pacific ocean basin
About percent of tsunamis occur in the Pacific ocean basin.

How do I know if I’m in a tsunami zone?

Emergency Warnings on Local Radio and Wireless Television Official tsunami warnings are available from Weather Radio and NOAA websites such as These sirens can also come via text message alerts and phone notifications to local authorities.

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