Explosion: The devastating undersea earthquake which spawned the tsunamis

Although Ireland does not sit on any major fault-line, it is still susceptible to earthquakes, according to an analysis report in the Sunday Independent.

The Emerald Isle has been hit in the past, with earthquakes in 1755, 1941, and 1875, and a strong tremor in July 1984. In December 2009, an earthquake with a local magnitude of 3.5 on the Richter scalecausing minor damage, but the country’s last big earthquake, measuring 5.4 on the Richter scale, came at 4 am on November 9, 1852.

In fact it was Irishman Robert Mallet, an engineer and amateur scientist born in Dublin in 1810, who coined the term 'seismology' and made the first 'seismometer' in 1846.

The Irish National Seismic Network (INSN) has stations in Dublin, Galway, Kerry and Donegal, which pick up earth waves from around the globe.

Tom Blake, the INSN director was alerted within 12 minutes of Japan’s devastating earthquake. He was able to read the scale of the quake and measure the shock waves that occurred under the earth's surface here in Ireland.

"Ireland has every reason to worry about the possibility of earthquakes," he said. "We see serious earthquakes occurring in the Atlantic, and when accompanied by tsunami there is cause for concern here.

"The effect of tsunami here is analogous to dropping a stone into a pond. You can see how the waves ripple. Not to over-emphasise the threat or create hysteria, information is power and it's important to be aware."