At 00.58 UTC on December 26th, 2004 the fourth most violent earthquake in the history of seismology (magnitude 9.5) with an epicenter off the west coast of Sumatra, Indonesia, caused the shifting of the Myanmar plate which overlapped with the Indian plate.
This rupture caused long narrow parts of the sea floor to pop up in seconds elevating to the height of 10 meters. These movements triggered the infamous waves which spread in all directions across the Indian ocean from the earthquake’s epicenter and hit the coasts of Indonesia, Malaysia, Thailand, Myanmar, Bnagladesh, Sri Lanka, India, Maldives, Seychelles, Somalia, Kenya, Madagascar, Tanzania at the speed of 800km/h and reaching heights of up to 30 meters.
Consequences were catastrophic, and this was also due to the lack of a tsunami warning system in the Indian Ocean. For these reasons despite a lag of up to several hours between the earthquake and the impact of the tsunami, nearly all of the victims in countries such as India and Sri Lanka were taken completely by surprise.
Verified deaths throughout the countries affected were more than 300,000, but it is estimated that it might have been more than 400,000. Evacuees were counted between 3 and 5 million. Deaths in Sri Lanka were more than 40,000 while the evacuees were more than 1.5 million.
In the Ampara district alone there were 10.500 deaths and 104.000 evacuees who were crammed in 71 tent camps afterwards.