When the earth shook...

Posted by Abdel Kadz on Tuesday, November 27, 2007 with 5 comments

...I was in bed asleep, drooling.

Image from http://earthquake.usgs.gov/

It was only around 6:30 p.m. that I learned a 6-point magnitude earthquake shook Dagupan and cascaded down to the Greater Manila Area around 12:27 p.m. today. It was on a crawler, really, of a primetime news that I picked up this particular info. Taguig, where I'm from, had a 2 magnitude quake, while Makati, where I work, registered a 3 on Richter. But wait, wait. Just how bad is a 6, 3, or 2 anyway?

According to one site, a 6 quake will result in pictures falling off walls, furnitures moving, and in some buildings, cracks in walls. A 3, which my officemates got to experience (a friend said that our office building is made of styrofoam, so no devastating effects on person or property... LOL), is noticeable if you are sitting still or upstairs in a house. And a 2 makes trees sway, small ponds ripple, doors swing slowly, but you can't tell an earthquake is to blame. So that explains why I was not even bothered to the point of waking up panic-stricken when the earthquake occured.

There are really no standard descriptions for magnitudes less than 6 from the sites I checked. But six above, it's a whole different story. Talk about atomic bombs (7), a 2-km meteorite hitting the earth at a speed of 25km/s (10), or Armageddon (12). These examples are based on TNT approximates enough to produce the magnitudes on the Richter scale; e.g. you need to blow up 160 teratons of dynamites all at the same time for an intensity 12 to occur. And for the country to register only a 6, we should all be thankful.

God is good, even to drooling sleepyheads like me.