Tsunami in Southeast Asia: Full Coverage

National Geographic News
Updated January 18, 2005
The great tsunami of 2004 was one of the worst disasters in history. Read our latest news stories and learn how tsunamis are generated, where they can strike, and what you can do to protect yourself.

Tsunami Blogs Help Redefine News, and Relief Effort
The tsunami of one month ago has been widely reported by eyewitnesses who published their own stories and images online. But not all the stories—or images—are true.
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Did Island Tribes Use Ancient Lore to Evade Tsunami?
Isolated tribes on islands off India were feared extinct after the December 26 tsunami—until they shot arrows at air force helicopters. Now an expert tells who the tribes are, and how they may have survived.
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Satellite Global Disaster Alert System Planned
More than 50 nations plan to link their networks of satellites and other Earth observation sensors to create an early warning system for natural disasters.
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Education Is Key to Tsunami Safety, Experts Say
In the wake of December's deadly tsunami governments are scrambling to set up early warning systems worldwide. But experts caution that technology alone may not be enough to avert another disaster.
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California Tsunami Victims Recall 1964's Killer Waves
Crescent City, California, takes tsunami warnings seriously. Reminders of a 1964 tragedy are abundant in the only town in the continental U.S. where people have been killed by a tsunami.
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Photo Gallery: Tsunami in Banda Aceh, Indonesia
Many eyewitnesses have compared the post-tsunami scene in Banda Aceh to that of Hiroshima, Japan, after it was hit by an atomic bomb during World War II.
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Schoolgirl's Geography Lesson Saves Tsunami Family
For British schoolgirl Tilly Smith it proved an invaluable lesson. What she learned from geography teacher Mr. Kearney helped save both herself and her family during the Indian Ocean tsunami disaster.
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Tsunami Clouds Future of Marine Animals
The destructive force of the recent tsunami is evident along coastlines throughout the Indian Ocean. But what was the impact on life beneath the waves?
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Tsunami Redraws Indian Ocean Maps
December's tsunami clogged shipping lanes, rearranged coasts, and created new islands. Now geographers are helping redraw the region so relief can reach ports in need.
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Tsunami Eyewitness Account by Nat Geo Photographer
Two weeks after the tsunami swamped the Indonesian city of Banda Aceh, thousands of bodies still cover the area. Looters are picking through the debris, and survivors wait for medical help, photographer Chris Rainier reports.
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Did Animals Sense Tsunami Was Coming?
While some 150,000 people were killed by last month's tsunami, few animals seem to have been caught off guard. Do animals have a sixth sense about such danger?
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Nat Geo TV Shows Help Tsunami Islander Save 1,500
When the December 26 tsunami struck Abdul Razzak's island in the Indian Ocean, he remembered what he had seen on National Geographic documentaries—and helped save some 1,500 lives.
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Tsunamis: Facts About Killer Waves
Get the basics on tsunamis: what they are, what causes them, how they can be avoided, and more.
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The Deadliest Tsunami in History?
The earthquake that generated the great Indian Ocean tsunami of 2004 is estimated to have released the energy of 23,000 Hiroshima-type atomic bombs. Find out what happened and how it was unleashed on millions of unsuspecting people.
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Tsunamis More Likely to Hit U.S. Than Asia
Giant tsunamis are more likely to hit the U.S. Pacific coast than to hit Asia, scientists say. Coastal residents may have only 15 minutes' warning.
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Tsunami-Battered Sumatra Ripe for More Disasters
Seated in one of the one world's most geologically active regions, Sumatra is ripe for more cataclysmic earthquakes and volcanic eruptions, scientists say.
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Did North American Quake Cause 1700 Japanese Tsunami?
Researchers say a Pacific Northwest fault once thought to be benign was struck by a massive, magnitude 9 earthquake in 1700, creating a tsunami that caused flooding and damage in Japan. Odds that another quake will occur along the same fault are "100 percent," one expert said.
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Prehistoric Asteroid "Killed Everything"
Scientists have found traces of an asteroid-collision event that they say would have created a giant tsunami that swept around the Earth several times, inundating everything except the mountains.
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Great Portugal Quake May Have a Sequel, Study Says
It was one of the greatest natural disasters in European history. The 8.7 earthquake that struck Portugal in 1755 killed at least 60,000 people and triggered tsunamis that wrecked seaports in Portugal, Spain, and Morocco.
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Can Animals Sense Earthquakes?
Accounts of animal anticipation of earthquakes have surfaced across the centuries. Catfish that move violently, chickens that stop laying eggs, and bees that leave their hive in a panic have been reported.
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Are Earthquakes Encouraged by High Tides?
Scientists have long suspected a relationship between tides and earthquakes but have reached little consensus. Now a new study reveals that very high tides might indeed be linked with seismic activity along coasts.
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Earthquakes, Volcanoes May Be Tied to Species Diversity
While earthquakes and eruptions are widely associated with death and devastation, researchers have found that the zones where such events occur most frequently are also rich cradles of life.
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California Quake Zones May Be More Lethal Than We Thought, Studies Say
Two new studies describe California's earthquake zones as more complex—and possibly more lethal—than previously thought.
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Newfound LA Fault Threatens Major Quake
Los Angeles sometimes seems like paradise. But life in the City of Angels comes at a price: earthquakes. Now the threat of "the big one" may be greater than previously feared.
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Can Satellites Aid Earthquake Predictions?
A new system known as the Global Earthquake Satellite System, or GESS, employs a technology called interferometric synthetic aperture radar (InSAR). Put simply, the high-tech mouthful allows scientists to detect minute deformations in the Earth's crust.
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Earthquake Prediction Remains a Moving Target
Unlike the physics that control the weather, the physics that control earthquakes are still poorly understood.
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Magma Surge Moves Nevada Mountain, Study Says
In late 2003 a swarm of small earthquakes struck 19 miles (30 kilometers) below Lake Tahoe, which straddles the border of California and Nevada. At the same time, Slide Mountain, 11 miles (18 kilometers) away in Nevada, moved dramatically, according to satellite readings.
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"Supercities" Vulnerable to Killer Quakes, Expert Warns
Unless protective measures are taken, once every century or so when the Earth trembles in a violent release of pent up tension, buildings will tumble, streets will buckle, and pipelines will snap, leaving upward of a million people crushed beneath the debris.
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