FOUND by Tweeters in Boston! – According to the US Geological Society (USGS), the magnitude-7 earthquake of January 12 near Port-au-Prince, Haiti, has generated a sharp increase in concerns about the potential for future earthquakes in Haiti and the surrounding region. The aftershocks will continue for months if not years in the affected area. The frequency of events will diminish with time, but damaging earthquakes will remain possible in the coming months. There is also a small chance of future earthquakes larger than the original one. During the recent quake cell phones and tweets played a major role is rescuing survivors, and some of the people coming to Haiti’s aid in this way were as far away as Boston!
If a quake of this magnitude occurred in the US or in Europe, most of the people who were buried in the rubble would have cell phones and Blackberries with which they could direct rescue work to their locations, but Haiti is too poor a country for this. But cell phones played a major part nevertheless: In Wired.com, Nathan Hodge reports that “relief workers in Haiti received an emergency text message Tuesday about a collapsed school, with children still alive in the rubble. A search-and-rescue team on the scene, however, couldn’t find the right location. Then a group of volunteers in Boston pinpointed the origin of the message, sent using the 4636 SMS shortcode. They rapidly relayed the information back to Eric Rasmussen, a former top naval medical officer working with rescue teams in Haiti. A team was then dispatched to the correct grid location. The coordinates were accurate to five decimal places.”
There are some strange things going on out there: We knew that the relief effort was worldwide, but what’s amazing to realize is that the RESCUE effort was too. If you want to help, click here. Hopefully, the Haitians will be celebrating again very soon.
To learn more, click here and here.
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