Friday, 2 October 2009
a week of Destruction and Devastation
The Philippines, Indonesia and the Samoan Islands have seen their share of events over the past several days, including previous Tropical Storm Ketsana and a series of earthquakes that has left potentially thousands dead.
The above image shows were these area's are in relation to each other. Samoa being on the far right, Indonesia and Singapore over to the left and the Philippines in the middle.
Just since we moved to Singapore in February 2007 there have been a few major earthquakes in the Sumatra region of Indonesia..... we have felt three of them out as far as Bukit Batok where we live in Singapore. Yesterday (Oct 1) would have been the strongest and the scariest. But nothing compared to what the people of Indonesia have been going through.
In the past couple of years the major ones have occurred in March and September 2007, February 2008 and now another two within the past few days.
The first of the recent great earthquakes, a magnitude 9.2 in December 2004, produced the most widespread and destructive tsunami in living memory. The cause of that calamity was the rupture of a 1600-km-long piece of the Sunda megathrust, a 6,000-km-long active fault that dives gently landward from the seafloor a couple hundred kilometers offshore of Myanmar, Sumatra, Java, and Bali. The section that broke in 2004 is a northern portion, between southernmost Myanmar and Aceh province in Sumatra. 230,000 people were killed in December 2004 ..... an unbelievable number of people.
The 2009 Padang earthquake occurred just off the southern coast of Sumatra, Indonesia. The major shock hit at 17:16:10 local time on September 30, 2009 It registered a moment magnitude of 7.6 making it similar in size to the 1906 San Francisco earthquake, the 1935 Quetta earthquake, the 2001 Gujarat earthquake, and the 2005 Kashmir earthquake.
The epicenter was 45 kilometres (28 mi) west-northwest of Padang, Sumatra, and 220 kilometres (140 mi) southwest of Pekanbaru, Sumatra. At least 1100 people were killed as a result, with thousands more trapped in collapsed buildings.
A second earthquake, which measured 6.6 Mw, struck the province of Jambi in central Sumatra, 08:52:29 local time on 1 October 2009 at a depth of 15 kilometres (9.3 mi), about 46 kilometres south-east of Sungaipenuh. It is not yet clear whether the two events are related.
Sumatra and Samoa earthquakes were inside the 'Ring of Fire' fault lines..... as seen in this image below:
The world's most quake-prone regions are located around the Pacific Ocean from Japan down to the Philippines and Indonesia and in the Americas, from Alaska to Chile, giving name to the Pacific 'Ring of Fire,' where about 90 per cent of the world's earthquakes occur.
Indonesia, the world's largest archipelago nation and one of the world's most quake-prone countries, sits on the Ring of Fire. Off Sumatra island, the Indo-Australian plate is pushing underneath the Eurasian plate, which extends as far as Sumatra.
Each year, the Indo-Australian plate moves up to 7 centimetres north-east.
Both earthquakes, which came within hours of each other, were on the “Ring of Fire”, fault lines along the Pacific coasts of America and Asia. But scientists said that the second was a “tragic coincidence” rather than a consequence of the first.
The Ring of Fire is an arc made up of volcanoes and undersea trenches located around most of the rim of the Pacific Ocean. The volcanoes and trenches mark areas where subduction takes place. As plates collide at these subduction zones, the seafloor dives underground at the trench and generates earthquakes that in turn can cause tsunamis. Sumatra, Indonesia, where the 2004 Indian Ocean tsunami first hit, is located on the Ring of Fire.
Image below is from the most recent earthquake in Sumatra ..... two women waiting for news of their loved ones.
Please keep the people of the Philippines, the Indonesians, the Samoans and all that are affected in some form or another in these areas - in your prayers.