Thursday, September 13, 2007

Emergency Procedures

The earthquake off Sumatra yesterday is still giving off aftershocks. While the tremors from the original earthquake were felt in Palembang, there was no damage there and even if there was a tsunami, the city wouldn't be affected. Here is a map of Indonesia. Palembang is on the eastern side of Sumatra while the quake was near Bengkulu, at the south-western side.

Even though Richard and I joked about his first earthquake experience and how he thought he was suddenly dizzy, this is an eye opener. For the next year and a half, we will be living in a foreign country that is potentially politically, racially and geographically volatile.

We need to be prepared. Its nonsense to just drop everything and run. You need to know WHERE to run to. WHO to run to. WHAT to bring while running. I'm glad to hear that the Australian embassy called twice to check on Aaron and I after the initial quake and subsequent aftershock. At least I know that somebody will look for me but I think Richard and I need to have a solid emergency response plan. How will we meet up? If we can't, where will we both head? Pack phone numbers, money, passports.....energy bars, water???? My mind is running wild!

In the past, I had many business trips to Tokyo and would sleep each night with my shoes laid out for easy slip on and my passport on the night stand next to me so that I could just grab it while I run out during an earthquake. I was alone then....only had to look after me.

I think I'll procrastinate on this till I'm back in Palembang but its definitely something we'll need to discuss.

7 comments:

John said...

In the midwest USA we don't worry about earthquakes, tsunami or hurricanes. We get tornados. It seems as if we all have our own natural disasters to deal with.

I'm sure that it is always best to have a plan.

number said...

I've spent 3 years in Columbia & Kansas City Missouri before. At least they have tornado warnings via tv, radio and sirens. There are no earthquake warnings, it just happens. Just need to know what to do.

Surfergirl said...

we're glad that richard and your house are safe.yes its best that you have a 'protocol' so to speak when that happens again.
im no stranger to earthquakes myself. the phils lies on a fault line and i can't count the number of times i'd felt earthquakes my whole life there. it's as common as "hey did you feel last night's quake?" the morning after.
but the worst was when mount pinatubo erupted. for 2 days straight, we felt earthquakes for almost every 15-30 minutes. and my elder relatives were on the roof shoveling ash off it so the house wont collapse. it was definitely a scary scary time.

Bilbo said...

I'm glad that you and your family are safe. One thing I have learned in recent years is the value of being prepared for emergencies, and so I encourage you to do that. And thanks for the map locating Palembang...I had wondered just where it was in relation to Jakarta, where one of my friends recently left at the end of a three-year tour at the American Embassy. Good luck, and stay safe!

JUST A MOM said...

Stopping by to check on ya... glad things are ok.

JUST A MOM said...

Hey stop by got somethin for ya

Evelyn said...

I was thinking of Richard when I read about the quakes, but there was no mention of Palembang, so, I assumed things should be ok there. Unfortunately, like many earthquake proned countries, Indonesia is a poor country where buildings aren't earthquake proof to a certain extend, so, when an earthquake happens, the death toll is high. I think there should be aid money going into retrofitting buildings. When Hawaii was hit by an earthquake last year, it was a pretty strong one (not as strong as 8.9!) and I think one person died and that's because the buildings there are "earthquake proof" to a certain extent. You get the gist...

Anyhow, I was telling my friend, G what you used to do when you used to travel to Japan and he said that it was a smart move just that he has to remember putting on some clothes before running out of the door since he sleeps naked! HAHAHA. These days, whenever we have a quake, and if he's at home, the first thing he grabs on to is is 50" plasma TV coz that's the only thing that isn't insured! D'oh. Just shows you the diff between the rich and the poor countries. Sigh.