WITH Bangkok and Northern Thailand shaken by yesterday’s powerful 6.8-magnitude earthquake which struck close to the ancient Myanmar capital of Bagan leaving three dead while in Italy at least 247 people were killed in a 6.2-magnitude quake, many would be wondering how best to protect themselves against tremblors.
It is worth remembering that earthquakes routinely take place just below the earth’s surface and sometimes this is even up to thousands of times a day but major quakes are less common. National Geographic magazine said.
This magazine, which is the official publication of the National Geographic Society and has been published continuously since its first issue in 1888, circulated a short list of precautions against this type of calamity as follows:
• Have an earthquake readiness plan.
• Consult a professional to learn how to make your home sturdier, such as bolting bookcases to wall studs, installing strong latches on cupboards, and strapping the water heater to wall studs.
• Locate a place in each room of the house that you can go to in case of an earthquake. It should be a spot where nothing is likely to fall on you.
• Keep a supply of canned food, an up-to-date first aid kit, 3 gallons (11.4 liters) of water per person, dust masks and goggles, and a working battery-operated radio and flashlights.
.• Know how to turn off your gas and water mains.
.If Shaking Begins
• Drop down; take cover under a desk or table and hold on.
• Stay indoors until the shaking stops and you’re sure it’s safe to exit.
• Stay away from bookcases or furniture that can fall on you.
• Stay away from windows. In a high-rise building, expect the fire alarms and sprinklers to go off during a quake.
• If you are in bed, hold on and stay there, protecting your head with a pillow.
• If you are outdoors, find a clear spot away from buildings, trees, and power lines. Drop to the ground.
• If you are in a car, slow down and drive to a clear place. Stay in the car until the shaking stops.
The Myanmar quake, which the Indian Express said was also felt across east India particularly West Bengal and Assam, damaged around 171 ancient pagodas, stupas and temples in Bagan.
Myanmar’s Culture and Religious Affairs Ministry said well-known structures such as the Sulamani, Dhammayangyi and Pya That Gyi temples were among those damaged, Myanmar Times said today.
It is feared that the extensive damage could possibly jeopardize an ongoing bid to get Bagan recognized as a World Heritage Site by the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO), this newspaper added.
Meanwhile, in Italy a series of strong aftershocks have been felt since the initial quake, including a 4.7-magnitude tremor that struck a few miles east of Norcia early this morning local time, CNN.com quoted the United States Geological Survey as saying.
More than 1,000 people have been displaced by the quake, and the Civil Protection agency said no residents were allowed to sleep in the devastated town of Amatrice on Wednesday night.
TOP: This aerial photo shows damaged buildings in the Italian town Amatrice. Photo: CNN.com
INSET: This US Geological Survey map shows the location and intensity of the Myanmar quake yesterday.
SOURCE: Nationalgeographic.com, Mmtimes.com, CNN.com, Indianexpress.com
Compiled by ThaiResidents.com