G1 – Earthquake Hits Peru




Earthquake hit Peru


A magnitude 8.1 earthquake at 33 km deep shook Peru on Saturday, June 23rd 2001. The focus was just off the Peruvian coast, about 200 km west of Arequipa, Peru’s second largest city. Three major aftershocks followed ranging from magnitude 5.5 to 6.3


Debris and collapsed homes killed at least 70 people, mostly in Arequipa, where much of the elegant stone architecture in the centre of the city has been destroyed. Over 30 people are missing from Camana, a nearby coastal town deluged by a quake-induced tsunamis. A landslide blocked the main road into Moquegua, 100 km from Arequipa, keeping emergency food and medicine from a town where 17 people were killed and 80% of the houses seriously damaged or flattened.


Stretching out against an active continental margin, Peru is no stranger to big quakes. The most memorable was the devastating magnitude 7.7 earthquake in 1970 that killed approximately 70,000 people during an avalanche of rock and snow on Mount Huascarán, a little over 280 km north of Lima (Peru’s capital city).



Figure 1




(a) Use figure 1 to illustrate the demographic and social impacts of tectonic activity. (5 marks)


(b) Highlight the different processes associated with the three plate margins. (10 marks)


(c) Explain how differing perceptions and awareness of the tectonic hazard may either increase or lessen the hazard risk of a given population. (10 marks)