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Friday, March 18, 2011

Japan Aftermath: Latest Photos for Earthquake Preparedness

Tsunami swept away cars and airplanes

Valuable property looked like garbage

Roads split in half

A woman looking on the catastrophic aftermath

The devastation that has rocked Fukushima and Sendai, Japan has called the attention of nations as to how prepared they are against earthquakes and tsunamis. Perhaps, no nation can perfectly prepare for a similar natural disaster since not even science can tell when and where exactly a destructive earthquake that could cause a gigantic tsunami would occur. However, nature has given us hint by visible active fault lines in our respective regions. Countries around the Pacific Ring of Fire are most likely to get hit.

The question is how prepared are we? The State along with the private sector and NGO’s should work on strict risk reduction measures, which include engineering design that follows seismic safety standard particularly on structures that may have potential danger to people like nuclear power plants, gas storage facilities or refineries, water dams, power lines and residential buildings. It’s impossible for people to out run a tsunami that moves at a speed of around 600-700mph so relocation is the best long-term solution although it would be difficult.

The public should cooperate when governments enforce strict seismic risk reduction policy. It’s the responsibility of government authorities and institutions to ensure the safety of the people in situations of clear and imminent danger. Perhaps, they can identify areas where people residing near coastal areas can go immediately after an earthquake.

I remember as a grade school student, we would have fire and earthquake drills once in a while in school. Maybe, schools should do exercises like that more frequently so that when the “real thing” happens, panic would be lesser. It would be advisable for people to do similar exercises at home. We can identify which parts are strong and which are not so we would know where and where not to go in case of an earthquake.

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