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Learn about the causes and consequences of earthquakes. Also learn about how people in Japan deal with earthquakes in their ...
Tags:Impact of Earthquakes on the Human Life Part 1/3,causes earthquakes,earthquake exercises japan,emergency drills earthquake,impact earthquakes,international asia pacific regional earthquake exe,japan deaths earthquakes,richter scale,what are earthquakes,worldwide media
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The Impact of Earthquakes on the Human Life Part 1/3
Earthquakes are sudden unpredictable movements of the earth’s crust that can result in widespread loss of life and extensive damage to buildings and infrastructure. Certain parts of the planet are more vulnerable to these catastrophic events and the people that live in these regions have taken different approaches to minimizing the effects of these extreme episodes.
The earth’s surface is ma de up of a number of interconnecting tectonic plates. Stressors form deep within the planet cause these plates to buckle or to slide pass each other. The more the pressure builds along one of these plate boundaries, the more catastrophic will be the sudden release of tension when it finally comes.
Japan is located on a plate boundary and tremors are common. A magnitude 6.8 quake that struck the Northwestern prefecture of Niigata in 2004 killed 51 people and injured thousands. That was Japan’s deadliest earthquakes since 1995 when a magnitude 7.2 quake killed over 6,000 people and cause catastrophic damage in the city of Kobe. But residents of the city like Tokyo live in fear of huge quakes like the Kanto of 1923 that killed at least 140 thousand people. That quake was at magnitude of 8.3 on the Richter scale and it is such a powerful quake that Japanese fear most.
The Richter scale is a logarithmic scale used to express the total amount of energy released by an earthquake although the scale has no upper limit, it barely used atypically between one and nine and each full-digit increment represents a 32-fold increase in released energy. Japan’s meteorological agency recently launched an earthquake early warning system. It is designed to provide enough warning on when a quake is about to strike to enable utilities to shut down their power plants and speeding trains to break before the shaking begins.
The system does not predict earthquakes but its sprawling network of underground census estimate the intensity of the quake once the ground ruptures and sounds an alarm before shaking stops by exploding the leg time it takes the different seismic waves to travel to the surface. When an earthquake strikes, every second counts. The service will be available through airways, construction, and power companies, and hospitals.
The emergency quake alert system races the alarm as soon as it detects the first seismic waves of a big quake that precedes the shaking. A training drill shows how the control room operator conveys the quake alarm to the men on the building side giving them enough time to find a safer location before the shaking and potential devastation begins. The Japan meteorological agency now only provides the early warning system to public and private facilities to reduce damage. In the future, the system will be improved to convey information of the coming quake to the general public.
Japan regularly holds earthquake exercises in collaboration with meteorological agencies, fire departments, and paramedics. These emergency drills are important in keeping rescue teams thoroughly prepared through the big quake strike. Three decades ago, China’s northeastern city of Tang Shen and Hebei province saw the most devastating earthquake in the country’s modern history. At least 242 thousand residents were killed in the disaster and millions of houses were reduced to ravel and ashes within seconds. Today, the international search and rescue advisory group is ready to swing into action when such tragedies happen.
ISARAG is a global network of more than 80 countries and disaster response organizations under he United Nations’ umbrella. In 2006, more than 200 rescue teams from China and 17 INSARAG teams from other countries gathered in Shijiazhuang, the capital city of Hebei province to hold a joint earthquake rescue drill. For decades, China has been doing its expertise in earthquake rescue. The teams use sniffer dogs to locate trapped victims and employ hydraulic rams to lift heavy ravel. Volunteers playing the role of injured survivors were helped or carried from buildings so that they can be treated immediately of evacuated to the nearest hospital.
During sub-exercises, a number of different agencies must cooperate smoothly. Also, foreign volunteers must understand the system in a country that could be called to at very short notice. The international Asia Pacific Regional Earthquake Exercise was designed to test how 18 countries could work together to deal with a serious to minimize the loss of life. The San Andres fault, the lowest section of this fault region has not produced a major earthquake in more than three centuries and stressed within the adjoining plates continues to build threatening major cities like Los Angeles.
A new study from the Scripps Institution of Oceanography at California which has analyzed 20 years of data suggests the fault could rapture at any time. Experts estimate that the quake on the seven San Andres region of magnitude 7.6 or greater could kill thousands of people in a densely populated greater Los Angeles area. Debi Kilb , the Science Director of the Scripts Institution says the earth is constantly moving and a movement in the San Andres fault is just a measure of time.
Using satellite radar and global positioning data, the scripts institution measure the movement of the seven Sand Andres fault and uses a super computer assimilating what might happen when the big one does come. The section last moved in 1690 producing an estimated 7.7 magnitude quake but it cause little injury or damage because hardly anyone lived there at the time. Calculating those subtle motions allows scientists to figure out how much strain is building up predicting exactly when that might happen however is beyond the scientist ability.
Scientists are working with underground census along the fault lines. Many Californian residents remember the quake that struck in January 1994. That tremor which registered 6.7 on the Richter scale struck the center of the San Fernando Valley killing 72 people and injuring more than 9,000.