While the total destruction brought about by the recent seismic event in Japan is not yet disclosed, it is sure to go down as one of the worst natural disasters in history. A tsunami with an average height of 33 feet (10 meters) brought devastation not only because of the water, but because of the debris that it carries.
Throughout history, a lot more tsunamis caused destruction all over the world. For a list of the worst tsunamis ever recorded, click on the following sites.
Being a country that is already somewhat used to earthquakes, Japan’s infrastructure held up very well. But it was the tsunami that caused further destruction. The International Tsunami Information has a comprehensive list tsunamis dating from 2000BC up to the present. Read more. http://ioc3.unesco.org/itic/categories.php?category_no=77
Earthquakes almost always cause great destruction on the wake of its path. The most recent major earthquake hit Japan with a magnitude of 8.9 which was later adjusted to a 9.0. And to make matters worse, it was followed moments after by a 10meter tsunami.
The earthquake that hit Japan, devastating as it may be, is actually not the world’s strongest seismic event. The largest recorded earthquake is from Chile which occurred on May 22, 1960. It measured to an astounding magnitude of 9.5.
The United States Geological Survey has listed the largest seismic events since 1900 and the recent earthquake in Japan ranked in at 4th. Read more. http://earthquake.usgs.gov/earthquakes/world/10_largest_world.php