What is an earthquake?

An earthquake in simple words is the shaking of the earth. It is a natural event. It is caused due to release of energy, which generates waves that travel in all directions. Earthquakes occur all the time, all over the earth. They are not even noticed. Major earthquakes are much less frequent. They can cause immense damage to buildings, bridges, dams and people. There can be a great loss to life and property. Earthquakes can cause floods, landslides and tsunamis. The point where the energy is released is called the focus of an earthquake, alternatively, it is called the hypocentre. The point on the surface, nearest to the focus, is called the epicentre. It is the first one to experience the waves.

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