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14 September, 2018 00:00 00 AM
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Tremor preparedness

Tremor preparedness

Bangladesh experienced another tremor yesterday morning which measured 5.3 with 5.6 at certain places. The epicenter of the quake is believed to be in Assam, India. So far, the quakes that have been felt in Bangladesh have had their epicentres far away, mostly across the border. However, the frequency with which this country is experiencing tremors is alarming. More than a decade ago, tremors were hardly noticed. In the past five years, there have been several quakes with a few going up to 7 in the Richter scale.

  Whether Bangladesh will face a major jolt or not is not something that can be stated with certainty, but since the country is over a zone which is prone to quakes, it’s always wise to be prepared beforehand in case the quakes are bigger and cause more damage.  For obvious reasons, the cities are the most vulnerable here, especially Dhaka, because this mega town has expanded without taking precautions against earthquakes.

One shudders to think what may happen to this concrete mess if there’s a severe tremor. A few years ago, speakers at a seminar held in the city expressed concern about the lack of safety measures in modern day buildings and absence of a clear idea as to what should be done in case there is a quake. Many of the recent buildings have been constructed keeping the issue of quakes in mind though a citywide earthquake awareness has become essential.

Just like a comprehensive traffic campaign which  encompasses the road users, pedestrians, school children and adults, a cohesive concept about what has to be done in an emergency should be made a priority. The local ward administration can, in association with the fire service department allotted to each area, carry out road campaigns or simply distribute leaflets to all homes with basic safety guidelines.

At the bigger level, the city corporations can take up the issue and send out SMS messages on quake safety followed by seminars featuring noted urban specialists. Also, the medical hospitals have to be ready if a major earthquake hits the country. The ongoing road safety drive came after several deaths on the road which later triggered a mass student uprising; taking this as a lesson, the government should not wait for a disaster to strike.

Pre-empting such episodes should be of importance.  Meanwhile, by government order, earthquake, fire and safety drills at offices plus factories can be made mandatory.  

 

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Editor : M. Shamsur Rahman

Published by the Editor on behalf of Independent Publications Limited at Media Printers, 446/H, Tejgaon I/A, Dhaka-1215.
Editorial, News & Commercial Offices : Beximco Media Complex, 149-150 Tejgaon I/A, Dhaka-1208, Bangladesh. GPO Box No. 934, Dhaka-1000.

Editor : M. Shamsur Rahman
Published by the Editor on behalf of Independent Publications Limited at Media Printers, 446/H, Tejgaon I/A, Dhaka-1215.
Editorial, News & Commercial Offices : Beximco Media Complex, 149-150 Tejgaon I/A, Dhaka-1208, Bangladesh. GPO Box No. 934, Dhaka-1000.

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