- Title: File of 2004 Indian Ocean Tsunami aftermath ahead of 15th anniversary
- Date: 19th December 2019
- Summary: Nearly 42,000 people, or close to 10,000 families, were rendered homeless by the waves that struck the archipelago off India's eastern coast. More than 3,500 people were killed on the islands and nearly 9,000 people were killed on the mainland, mostly in the southern state of Tamil Nadu. NAGAPATTINAM, TAMIL NADU, INDIA (FILE - DECEMBER 27, 2004) (ORIGINALLY 4:3) (ANI - NO USE INDIA) VARIOUS OF PEOPLE ON WINDY BEACH DAMAGED ELECTRICAL WIRES AND DEBRIS ON ROAD DEBRIS FROM DAMAGED HUTS / PEOPLE LOOKING DAMAGED JEEP AMID DEBRIS FLOODED STREETS NAGAPATTINAM, TAMIL NADU, INDIA (FILE - JANUARY 3, 2005) (ORIGINALLY 4:3) (ANI - NO USE INDIA) DESTRUCTION IN AREA DEVASTATED BY TSUNAMI EXCAVATOR REMOVING DEBRIS VARIOUS OF WORKER DIGGING THROUGH DEBRIS NAGAPATTINAM, TAMIL NADU, INDIA (FILE - DECEMBER 29, 2004) (ORIGINALLY 4:3) (ANI - NO USE INDIA) VARIOUS OF AID WORKERS DISTRIBUTING FOOD PACKAGES TO PEOPLE
- Embargoed: 2nd January 2020 00:48
- Keywords: 2004 tsunami Banda Aceh India Indonesia Sri Lanka Thailand aftermath anniversary disaster file
- Location: ACEH PROVINCE, MEULABOH, OFF SUMATRAN COAST, INDONESIA/ GALLE, HAMBANTOTA, KARATPITIYA, MULLAITTIVO, SRI LANKA/ PHUKET, PHI PHI ISLAND, PHANG NGA, KHAO LAK, THAILAND/ TAMIL NADU, INDIA
- City: ACEH PROVINCE, MEULABOH, OFF SUMATRAN COAST, INDONESIA/ GALLE, HAMBANTOTA, KARATPITIYA, MULLAITTIVO, SRI LANKA/ PHUKET, PHI PHI ISLAND, PHANG NGA, KHAO LAK, THAILAND/ TAMIL NADU, INDIA
- Country: Various
- Topics: Disaster/Accidents,Earthquakes/Volcanoes/Tsunami,Editors' Choice
- Reuters ID: LVA008BANUVYF
- Aspect Ratio: 16:9
- Story Text: EDITORS NOTE: EDIT CONTAINS GRAPHIC IMAGES
December 26 will mark the 15th anniversary of a deadly earthquake and tsunami that struck a large part of Asia, claiming the lives of over 226,000 people, and leaving nearly 2 million homeless.
Over 50,000 bodies were never recovered.
When a 9.15-magnitude quake opened a fault line deep beneath the ocean on Dec. 26, 15 years ago, it triggered a wave as high as 17.4 meters (57 feet) which crashed ashore in more than a dozen countries, wiping some communities off the map in seconds.
Indonesia was the worst hit, 166,000 either dead or missing. Massive reconstruction aid in Banda Aceh has rebuilt a new city on top of the ruins, but the devastation reached as far away as the east coast of Africa, including countries like Kenya, Somalia and Tanzania.
Those killed in 2004 received no formal warning of the approaching waves and were left with no chance to get out of the way.
Since then, millions of dollars have gone into building a vast network of seismic and tsunami information centres, setting up sea and coastal instruments and erecting warning towers.
But doubts linger about how ready countries on the Indian Ocean really are for another giant wave. The past decade has seen more than $400 million spent across 28 countries on an early-warning system comprising 101 sea-level gauges, 148 seismometers and nine buoys, but there is concern about the effectiveness and maintenance of the system.
Some experts say complacency is leaving millions vulnerable and governments still warn of the ever-present risks.
(Production: Joseph Campbell, Phyllis Xu)
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