Friday, January 15, 2010


Having just recently moved from a state that earthquakes seem to be a common experience in, the largest quake I ever experienced in California was only a 5.8. Scary enough but obviously nothing like what the people of Haiti have experienced. Their quake was registered at 7.0. For those of you who are unfamiliar with the Richter Scales ratings, each time an earthquake's magnitude increases by one point it causes 32 times more energy to be released. So not only was Haiti's earthquake exponentially more devastating because of the power of the quake, it has been devastating because of the inadequate (if even existent) earthquake prepared buildings. The fact that Haiti is one of the poorest countries in the world has helped to make the Haitians extremely vulnerable to a natural disaster of this kind. Their buildings were completely unprepared for this kind of quake in part because the country lacks the funds to construct buildings with adequate infrastructure to withstand (or at least not disintegrate from) earthquakes. We are very fortunate here in the US that this is not the case for those who live in the most earthquake prone areas of this country. We are lucky. The Haitians are not. So my heart goes out to all of those who are suffering such tremendous loss in Haiti. May they all be in our prayers.
Mary Ann

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