Earthquakes are one of the world’s most dangerous natural disasters. In fact, an earthquake that lasts only two seconds can destroy several cities, bring buildings and bridges crashing down, and cause years worth of damage
Earthquakes occur at fault lines, or cracks in the earth’s crust. When huge plates of the earth’s crust grind together at a fault line, rocks may shatter and release huge vibrations to the earth’s surface. These vibrations are what we call earthquakes.
Earthquakes happen most frequently near edges of the earth’s tectonic plates. Specifically, they are common along the “Ring Of Fire,” or the edge of the Pacific Plate that lies beneath the Pacific Ocean. Named for the many volcanoes along it, the Ring of Fire spans Japan, the Philippines, New Zealand, the western coastlines of both North and South America, and the infamous San Andrea’s Fault.
Scientists can measure and record earthquakes with devices called seismometers. It is clear from these records that earthquakes can certainly cause extensive destruction in our world.