Dangerous Places Around the World

By: Michaela Bissen, Frank Knowles, and Lucas Buckley

Introduction

There are many places in the world that are dangerous, but some of the most dangerous places in the world are Yogyakarta, Indonesia; Tokyo, Japan; and Naples, Italy. But what makes these places dangerous? The reason all of these places are hazardous is because of the tectonic activity going on in all of these locations. All of these places in the world are situated on or near tectonic plate boundaries. The movement of the plates cause different kinds of activity. Some examples of things that can happen on a plate boundary are earthquakes and volcanoes. Earthquakes and volcanoes can happen in each one of these locations.

Yogyakarta, Indonesia

Mount Merapi is located north of the major city of Yogyakarta on the island of Java. Yogyakarta is considered as one of the most attractive cities in Java. Yogyakarta, nicknames Yogya, has various temples that are major tourist attractions. One of the temples in Yogyakarta is the temple of Prambanan. It is the largest Hindu temple in Southeast Asia. It is located near the Buddhist Borobudur temple. Construction of Prambanan started in 850 AD and the temple opened in 856 AD. Another attraction in Yogyakarta is Taman Sari, or the Water Castle. It was built in 1758 for the Royal family as a rest house. It was badly damaged due to an earthquake in 1867.

Mount Merapi is located on a convergent boundary at the subduction zone where the Indo-Australian Plate is sliding beneath the Eurasian Plate. The Indo-Australian plate is going beneath the Eurasian Plate and melts underneath it causing the hot magma to rise and erupt. It also causes earthquakes in the area. Mount Merapi is part of the Pacific Ring of Fire. Being in this location makes it one of most active volcanoes on the island of Java. Mount Merapi is one of the most active volcanoes out of 129 active volcanoes in Indonesia. Eruptions in the area of Mount Merapi began about 400,000 years ago. Small eruptions occur about every two to three years and larger, more explosive eruptions occur every 10-15 years.

In the past 500 years about 68 large eruptions on Mount Merapi have been recorded. Mount Merapi is near the city of Yogyakarta and thousands of people live on the slope of the volcano and large eruptions can have catastrophic effects. Earthquakes also pose a danger to the people of Yogyakarta. In May 2006, a 6.2 Richter scale earthquake struck a town not far south of Yogyakarta. The earthquake caused nearly 6,000 deaths. The earthquake damaged several town and many more villages around the area. In spite of the dangers of earthquakes and volcanic eruptions due to the tectonic activity, Yogyakarta is a very historic and beautiful city.

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Mount Merapi

Tokyo, Japan

A little island off the coast of Asia is called Japan. It is a good place to live because you have a lot of coast to go fishing, swimming and boating on. Having a population of 8.6 million people you will never be lonely. Even though you live in the city, you will always have neighbors wherever you are! Another good thing about this major city is the shopping. Wherever you look there will be small shops, malls, and farmer markets.


Tokyo, Japan sits on multiple faults. In fact it is riddled with them. It is also located at the junction of four tectonic plates. More facts on Tokyo, Japan from the site http://factsanddetails.com/japan.php?itemid=866. They also have multiple volcanoes. As stated before it is located on four junction plates. People that live in Japan say that is extremely unusual for a year to go by without three or four earthquakes measuring 6.0 or more.


Tokyo is one of the most dangerous places to live for multiple reasons. It sits on many fault lines. It is also located at the middle of four junction plates. Some bad things that could happen in Tokyo, Japan is earthquakes, volcanoes, and tsunamis. Tokyo will have an earthquake every few days! The most lives lost during an earthquake was 9,000. Most of the people that had died were from falling buildings. Even though these things happen, people still live here. They live here because of the beaches, the sunsets, and the shopping. The food is one of the most important reason that people live here in beautiful, luscious Tokyo, Japan.


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Naples, Italy

Located in Naples, Italy overlooking the the city and bay of Naples lies one of the largest volcanoes in Europe and is still currently active. Mount Vesuvius lies on a fault line caused by subduction of the African Plate going under the Eurasian plate causing volcanic activity. Although the volcano is still active locals still live on the slopes or near the volcano, why is this?

The tectonic plate activity in this place is caused by a subduction zone where the African plate is moving under the Eurasian plate not only causing volcanic activity but earthquakes as well.

Although it is dangerous it is great for farming, the lava that has broken down has left minerals in the soil which creates very suitable farming conditions. Another reason is that the ash from the volcano that once shot out of the volcano which is harmful at first but after a period of time the ash leaves behind many nutrients, which when mixed with water makes great soil to plant and sell crop’s in. However many may not even care about the risk of the volcano, some live there because that's where they were born and that’s where their family has always been so they refuse to leave. Some stay because of the view and attractions the city and the coastline offer and simply could care less that there is a volcano that is still currently active and has been for hundreds of years.


Even though it is beautiful scenery, and lot’s to do does not lower risk of an eruption. The most famous eruption of this volcano happened in 79 A.D. when the volcano suddenly erupted spitting hot ash as high as 20 miles into the air a spewing molten lava it buried the 2 cities of Pompeii, and Herculaneum and killed around 16,000 people. However it’s most recent eruption happened in March 1944, it destroyed 3 and a half villages. At first people could see smoke coming out of the volcano, and lava collecting around the rim of the volcano before the main explosion on March 18, 1944.
Even though it has not erupted in 69 years does not mean that it does not have the potential to blow it’s top again, it however would be good if it oozed lava every once in awhile because if the volcano does not release some pressure even if it is in little portions, because the longer the pressure builds up the bigger the blast will be.


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Conclusion

All these location’s are all equally dangerous. Tokyo, Japan for the three faults that it sits on; Yogyakarta, Indonesia for it’s multiple volcanoes; Naples, Italy for its scenery and famous volcano. Even though they are all dangerous, people still live there. Why they live there you ask? That is up to the people that are there. Tourists still like to go there for the sites. As a chance of being there when a volcano and or earthquake or volcano going off. They live there even though there is a slight probability that it can happen.


Sources:

Yogyakarta:

"FAQ: A Look Inside Mount Merapi | LiveScience." 2011. 25 Feb. 2013 <http://www.livescience.com/11081-faq-mount-merapi.html>

"Yogyakarta, Indonesia Vacations, Tourism, Guides ... - Yahoo! Travel." 2003. 25 Feb. 2013 <http://travel.yahoo.com/p-travelguide-485563-yogyakarta_vacations-i>

"Wonderful Indonesia - Prambanan: The Exotic Hindu Temple." 2009. 25 Feb. 2013 <http://www.indonesia.travel/en/destination/247/prambanan>

"Active Indonesian volcanoes | Merapi 2010 eruptions." 2010. 25 Feb. 2013 <http://www.virtualuppermantle.info/Merapi.htm>

"Mount Merapi - Rockcollector.co.uk." 2006. 25 Feb. 2013 <http://www.rockcollector.co.uk/editorial0506.htm>

"Tourism in Indonesia: Tourism Picking Up in Yogyakarta After the ..." 25 Feb. 2013 <http://debby-pariind.blogspot.com/2008/06/tourism-picking-up-in-yogyakarta-after.html>

Tokyo:
"EARTHQUAKES AND JAPAN - Japan | Facts and Details." 2012. 25 Feb. 2013 <http://factsanddetails.com/japan.php?itemid=866>
"Volcano Eruption in Japan - Patheos." 2011. 25 Feb. 2013 <http://www.patheos.com/blogs/unreasonablefaith/2011/03/volvano-eruption-in-japan/>
"List of volcanoes in Japan - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia." 2007. 25 Feb. 2013 <http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_volcanoes_in_Japan>
Naples:
"Mount Vesuvius - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia." 2003. 25 Feb. 2013 <http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mount_Vesuvius>
"Mount Vesuvius - Geology & Earth Science." 2008. 25 Feb. 2013 <http://geology.com/volcanoes/vesuvius/>
"Benefits of Volcanoes - Library - ThinkQuest." 2003. 25 Feb. 2013 <http://library.thinkquest.org/C0112681/Eng/Normal/Kids/benefits.htm>