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Friday, March 11, 2011

Earthquake and Tsunami

As I watch Fox News this morning I am mesmerized at the videos on the damage that has taken place in Japan this morning.  The death toll is rising constantly and will continue to rise.  They have no idea how many people have already died and how many will die throughout the day.  The power has been turned off all over Japan.  The gas mains have ruptured in many places and the tsunami has wiped out  many coastal towns.  I really feel for these people.  They will be in my prayers for quite awhile.  There is still dangers to the U.S. islands and to the west coast of the U. S.  The earthquake itself was 8.9 on the Richter Scale.  That is very rare to have such a strong earthquake anywhere. 

My grandmother was in the 1906 earthquake in San Franscico which was estimated from 7.5 to 8.25 which was pretty devasting and the fires afterward were awful.  They were still using oil lamps and gas lamps.  The gas lines ruptured and caused most of the fires.  My grandmother was in a hotel at the time which was woodframed and she said in her room the floor undulated about 3 ft. and she watched things on her table slide off of the table onto the floor with no breakage because the floor came up to meet the top of the table.  She and her 3 sons stood in the entrance door to her room until the quake stopped then they grabbed a few clothes and ran out doors to the park across the street.  They lived in the park for about a week because none of the buildings were safe. 

Japan has more earthquake proof buildings than almost any other country.  They are very good at engineering and I expect all of the major buildings in the city were okay with the earthquake but the tsunami is a different story.   The homes that were hit by the tsunami are no more. They were being swept inland and then back out as the waves retreated. 

Now are we prepared if something bad hits in our area?  Could a tornado or a hurricane destroy your home and leave you homeless?  Do you have your G.O.O.D. bag ready so you can evacuate if needed?  Do you know what you would need to take in your area?  Some things are universal in all areas for our Get Out Of Dodge bag such as food and clothing and a full tank of gas for your vehicles. There will also be specifics for each family or individual.  Medications, of which some will be in your bag, might have to be gathered out of the refrigerator or your bedside, such as insulin or some antibiotics.  What about the area you live in?  Is it still cold? Snow and ice?  You will need warmer clothing and sleeping bags.  How about extra blankets? Do you have snow tires on your car?  Do you have chains in your trunk? Everyone should sit down and consider what they might need if they had to leave their homes and head inland or away from a dam or out of an area that is having flooding. Sometimes there is very little notice and if you are at work and don't have time to go home for your bags what do you have with you in your car so you could leave straight from work?  Do you have a
plan for those still at home to meet you somewhere out of the area of danger?  Do you have a way to contact your loved ones if you are on the road?  Like I said earlier everyone should sit down and think about what you may need and how to evacuate.  Routes should be planned out you should have paper maps with you as well as your GPS.  In some circumstances the GPS may not be what you need to evacuate.  GPS is set up to use main highways and if they are parking lots you will need to avoid the main highways and take the secondary roads.  I would just like everyone to be aware of what they may need and have everything ready to go.  Let's all be praying for our own country's areas that may be hit by the tsunamis and keep praying for Japan.

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