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Earthquakes are sudden, unpredictable movements of the Earth's crust, which can result in widespread loss of life, as well as extensive damage to buildings, and infrastructure. Certain parts of the world are more susceptible to these types of catastrophic events, such as Japan, which suffered a quake rating 6. 8 on the Richter scale in 2004, killing 51 people and injuring thousands. Vulnerable countries are working towards developing reliable early warning systems so that they can better prepare their people and cities for impending disaster.