December 25, 2005


One year ago, a massive magnitude 9 earthquake ruptured the sea floor off Indonesia’s Sumatra island, sending 10-metre waves roaring across the Indian Ocean at jetliner speeds that crashed without warning into seaside communities in a dozen countries.

The disaster’s scale was overwhelming.

At least 216,000 people were killed or disappeared in the waves, the Associated Press found in an assessment of government and credible relief agency figures in each country hit. The United Nations puts the number at least 223,000, though it says some countries are still updating their figures.

The true toll will probably never be known, as many bodies were lost at sea and in some cases the populations of places struck were not accurately recorded.

Hard to believe it’s been a whole year.

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