The Great Hanshin earthquake, or the Kobe
earthquake as it is more commonly known overseas,
was an earthquake in Japan that measured 7.2 on the
Japanese Scale. It occurred on January 17, 1995 at
5:46 am 52 seconds in the southern part of Hyogo
Prefecture and lasted for approximately 20 seconds.
The epicenter of the earthquake was on the northern
end of Awaji Island, near the cosmopolitan city of
Kobe with a population of 1.5 million. A total of 6,433
people, mainly in the city of Kobe, lost their lives.
Additionally, it caused approximately ten trillion yen in
damage. It is listed in the Guinness Book of Records
as the costliest natural disaster. It was the worst
.earthquake in Japan since the Great Kanto
earthquake in 1923, which claimed 140,000 lives.