Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Earthquake

Earthquake along the US east coast. Fortunately Eli was eating lunch with a friend from CA who knew what to do: Run outside. Equally fortunately he was a bit gimpy so Eli made it to the door first.

Ms. Rabett who was up on the 10th floor of a building said the whole place shook. Eli's grad student hugged his glass vacuum manifold, and a couple of things fell off the shelf (magnitude 5.9 or so)

We live in interesting times.

UPDATE: Minor damage in DC and along the coast. Traffic jams left and right. Commuter rail shut down, Metro running at a crawl until tracks are inspected. Nuclear plants at Lake Anna near the epicenter are scrammed and running with generator power

Otherwise, beautiful weather so folk are just standing outside talking.

14 comments:

Anonymous said...

And now you guys have a hurricane headed your way....

(Posting from a place in coastal Southern California that hasn't suffered any significant earthquake damage since we were admitted to the Union, hasn't ever been hit by a hurricane, and where it's currently (1200PDT) cool and breezy enough to wear a long-sleeved shirt comfortably -- not that I want to rub it in or anything...)

--caerbannog the anonybunny

chek said...

Glad to hear you and yours are safe, Brer Eli.

I've attributerd the event, according to initial data, to an angry god protesting against the first sc(k)eptic filth claim of 'whitewash' regarding Dr. Mann's most recent exoneration.

I predict an angry, fat, moustachioed, impotent, clueless, Republican, politically-scienced climate blogger will rue the day.

Lionel A said...

5.9 magnitude - only a little fracking quake then.

James Annan said...

AIUI you are better off staying indoors - buildings very rarely collapse (if properly built) but bits fall off them and injure bystanders. In any case, if you get hit by a serious earthquake, there's probably not much you can do but try to grab on to and cower under whatever may be nearby until things quieten down.

http://www.fema.gov/hazard/earthquake/eq_during.shtm

Anonymous said...


I predict an angry, fat, moustachioed, impotent, clueless, Republican, politically-scienced climate blogger will rue the day.


I've been wondering why Mann hasn't moved more agressively on the legal front to deal with all the libel/slander he's been subjected to...

Maybe it's because he's been waiting for all the official inquiries to wrap up ("collecting ammo", so to speak).

Time will tell, I guess... Hopefully, the fact that Mann now has a copy of a US Government Inspector General's report to wave in front of a jury will start making certain deniers a bit nervous...

Who knows? Mann just might end up with the title to a spiffy double-wide formerly owned by a certain angry, fat, moustachioed, impotent, clueless, Republican, politically-scienced blogger....

David B. Benson said...

In a major earthquake, stand in a doorway and hang on.

For a major hurricane, get the h*** out of there in plenty of time.

yea-mon said...

Good to hear your lupine self came out of the quake undamaged, and to echo James - if there is a next time, the doorway is your friend (at least in Japan where most entrances seem to be reinforced with steel)

Rattus Norvegicus said...

yea-mon, that would be lagomorph self. Lupine would be Wiley.

yea-mon said...

Thanks Rattus,

I should have paid more attention in Biology class...

Anonymous said...

The problem with promoting the advice to 'stand in the doorway' is that, if there are more than 2 or 3 people in the room with only one doorway and all of them heed that advice by rote...then all you will get is a bunch of people in an angry tangle, most of whom will have no overhead protection whatsoever.
Here James' link to FEMA's 'drop, cover and hold-on' makes much more sense. However, advice given to me by David Alexander (author of "Confronting Catastrophe", etc.) was based on his knowledge that buildings/ceilings rarely pancake flat [with some obvious exceptions]. He says that a good survival option is to lie on the floor at the foot of an interior supporting wall. That way, if ceiling members fail at their junction with the wall, the ceiling will either fall and protect you (i.e. by forming a tent-like shelter over you, or due to their length their falling arc will miss you (i.e. the 'tent' forms against the opposite wall. If you lie half way along the wall you will also be less likely to be crushed in the unfortunate event that you got the orientation of the ceiling support structure 90 degrees out.
Given the time you actually get to respond in a 'big one' and the likelihood of a perception/action gap that will slow any response that you are able to make, 'drop, cover and hold' is still the likely the best option to build into your 'muscle memory' bank.

Hasis

Anonymous said...

I wonder if there was any damage from the 5.3 Colorado quake that was also in the news.

Berbalang

John said...

I live in the Las Vegas area, and have experienced a couple of earthquakes in the 24 years I've lived here. Once an earthquake happened in the middle of the night, and as the house shook, my wife urged us to get out of the house. I said that we should stay inside. By the time I figured out she was right, the quake was over and the point was moot.

Jim Bouldin said...

You guys owe us a hurricane for that.

Mark said...

The wingnuts are fighting each other over whether the quake was due to God's anger over gays, President Obama, abortion, or Jon Huntsman's criticism of Republican anti-science.