1964 Alaska earthquake, USA

     As a part of the Pacific Ring, the southern coast area of Alaska experiences many earthquakes. On Good Friday, March 27, 1964, a great earthquake of magnitude 9.2 struck Prince William Sound and Turnagain Heights Lanslide, Alaska, 64 caused severe damage in the form of landslides and liquefaction as seen in the pictures (SC). This seismic event is not only the second largest ever to have been recorded but it lasted for over 3 minutes (radio announcement) and was felt over an area of 500,000 square miles. A tsunami, heavily increased the amount of damage to wharf and waterfront facilities, and caused five deaths hours after the earthquake in Crescent City, California


     Liquefaction in sand layers, Cracked highway, Alaska, 1964 and in sand and silt seams in the clayey soils beneath Anchorage, caused many of the destructive landslides that occurred during the earthquake (Seed 1973). The liquefied seams and lenses disturbed the sensitive clays, and caused their strengths to drop below the levels needed for stability. Click on the picture to the right for an explanation of the shown road embankment failure.

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