Another Record-Breaking Quake & Tsunami Hit Solomon Islands

posted by Sarah N Worthy IATTWJ Member @ 1:23 AM
February 7, 2013

         A violent 8.M++ earthquake followed by a five-foot high tsunami hit the remote villages of Solomon Islands yesterday, destroying several villages and leaving an unknown number of persons dead.

George Herming, a spokesman for the prime minister of the Solomon Islands told the Associated Press (AP) of Sydney, Australia (AP) and the guardian.co.uk that the quake hit the western side of Santa Cruz island, damaging some 80 properties and leaving several people missing, and presumed dead.

Solomon Islands Police Commissioner John Lansley told AP, “Sadly, we believe some people have lost their lives.  At the moment we potentially know of four, but there may of course be more.”

The Solomon Islands are east of Indonesia and Australia.  All South Pacific nations were placed on alert.  AP adds, “disaster teams are working to reach the remote area and assist with search and rescue efforts. So far, their arrival has been hindered by the tsunami, which flooded left the airport littered with debris.”

The following tsunami flooded the airport and at least four villages were hit, two severely.  As soon as the Pacific area alarms went off, people began moving to higher ground, which helped to keep the number of casualties down.

Sydney’s AP says: “The Solomons comprise more than 200 islands with a population of about 552,000 people. The islands lie on the “Ring of Fire” – an arc that stretches around the Pacific rim and where about 90% of the world’s quakes occur.”  The U.S. geological survey adds that the “quake struck 81 km (50 miles) west of Lata at a depth of 28.7 km (17 miles).”

News outlets rushed to cover this quake as it is in the same area where a 8.1 quake killed some 50 persons and and destroyed thousands of homes in 2007.  Because islands-wide alarm systems were not in place, the United States sent two former Presidents to oversee reconstruction and sufficient alarm systems installed.

sciencemediacentre.co.nz reports scientists expected the damage and number of deaths to be far worst:  “oh no, here we go again, this will be a bad one,” one geologists estimated.  Professor James Goff, Director of the Tsunami and Natural Hazards Research Group at the University of New South Wales,summarizes:

“This part of the Solomon Islands is in a particularly active part of the boundary between the Australian and Pacific Plates, and has seen a swarm of earthquakes recently. In geological terms, this is hot on the heels of the 2007 event that occurred in the Western Province––an area of different plate boundaries and different activity, but in reality we know very little about the long-term earthquake and tsunami activity of the entire Solomon Islands region . . .

Wholesale Christian books warns that in these last days, we must be ever ready for such catastrophes:  “And when these things begin to come to pass, then look up, and lift up your heads; for your redemption draweth nigh (Luke 21: 28).”

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