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Ecuador and Lebanon report the highest death toll from quakes

Washington, Feb 26 (Prensa Latina) Ecuador and Lebanon, closely followed by Haiti and Turkmenistan, top the list of countries with the highest death tolls due to earthquakes, taking into account the size of their population, Nature published on Monday.

Earthquakes have claimed a large number of lives in populous nations such as China, but the study’s authors sought to understand which countries suffer the greatest death tolls.

Thus, researchers analyzed data from 35 nations and regions that have accumulated at least 10,000 deaths associated with earthquakes since 1500.

According to the experts, a nation’s death toll depends not only on the frequency and strength of its earthquakes, but also on factors such as the size of its population, the resilience of its infrastructure to those phenomena, and its capacity to respond to disasters.

Aftermaths of recent earthquakes support the authors’ findings, as when a magnitude 7.5 earthquake struck Japan in January, just 241 people didn’t survive.

The study concluded on an encouraging news: researchers found a steadfast decline in the death tolls over time in all countries analyzed.They attributed that change to improvements in construction and a steady migration from rural to urban areas, with more resilient buildings and better responses to disasters.