Vietnam gets an occasional earthquake, but the country isn’t on a major faultline. During the 20th century, there were over 130 quakes, but only two were considered dangerous and destructive. Despite being prone to typhoons and flooding, Vietnam isn’t at a considerable risk for significant seismic activity.
The most significant earthquakes in Vietnam occurred in the Dien Bien area in 1935 and 1983, with magnitudes reaching between 6 and 7. More minor, less intense earthquakes only rarely happen now and don’t get past a magnitude of 5. It’s speculated that major quakes reaching an 8 or 9 on the magnitude scale only occur in the area every 500-900 years.
Natural Disasters in Vietnam
The most prominent and worrisome natural disasters in Vietnam are typhoons and flooding. The occasional typhoon blows through the country and can cause excessive running water, threatening villages and foundations with flooding. Crops have been destroyed in these powerful tropical storms, in addition to entire buildings, roads, and family homes.
The odds of experiencing an earthquake in Vietnam are pretty slim, but it will be minor and potentially unnoticed even if one does happen. Keep your head on a swivel for those motorbikes though!