Switzerland has also been greatly affected by natural disasters. Two previously recorded natural disasters in this area would be the:
1356 Basel earthquake
The Basel earthquake of 1356, also known as the Great Basel Earthquake, is the most significant seismological event to have occurred in Central Europe in recorded history. The earthquake destroyed the town of Basel, Switzerland, on 18 October 1356 and caused much destruction in a vast region extending into France and Germany. The earthquake could be felt as far away as Zurich, Konstanz and even in Ile-de-France. The maximum seismic intensity registered on the MSK scale was of IX-X. Notably, the macroseismic map was established on the basis of damages reported by the region's 30 to 40 castles. From this macroseismic data, the Mw magnitude of the earthquake is estimated at around 6.2. The earthquake took place in the evening at around 22:00 (local time) and numerous aftershocks followed during the night between October 18-19. Basel experienced a second, very violent shock in the middle of the night. The town within the ramparts was destroyed by a fire when torches and candles falling to the floor set the wooden houses ablaze. The number of deaths within the town of Basel alone is estimated at 300. The seismic crisis lasted a year. The modeling of the macroseismic data suggests that the earthquake's source had an East-West orientation, a direction corresponding with the overlapping faults on the Jura Front. On the other hand, recent paleoseismologic studies attribute instead the cause of this earthquake to a normal fault, oriented NNE-SSW and south of the town. The significant magnitude of the event suggests a possible extension of this fault under the town itself. This earthquake is also known as the 'Seisme de la Saint-Luc', as 18 October is the feast day of Saint Luke the Evangelist.
2005 European floods
The 2005 European floods hit mainly Romania, Switzerland, Austria and Germany, as well as several other countries in Central Europe and Eastern Europe during August 2005. The disaster came at a time when Portugal was suffering from intense forest fires which left 15 dead and days before the powerful Hurricane Katrina hit the United States.
If you are in this area and need to contact the emergency services you can call
Fire brigade: 118