Remembering Boxing Day 2004
Posted on December 26, 2007
a church after the boxing day Tsunami
It was almost five in the evening an it was such a boring day. It was raining in KL (if I remember it well). We switched on the TV and keep trying to find anything worthy of watching till we tuned to BBC International.
The news splashed on BBC, although it seems blurry still but it was becoming clearer and clearer by the minutes. Soon the news made it to CNN International. Penang was hit, we were told, yet nothing on local nework.
Soon, we started to contact friends and families. My producer, Hajah Ruhani was in Langkawi dan my lawyer sister was in Penang during the tragedy. But their experiences were nothing like what being screened on TV.
The Deadliest Tsunami in History?
The earthquake that generated the great Indian Ocean tsunami of 2004 is estimated to have released the energy of 23,000 Hiroshima-type atomic bombs, according to the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS).
Giant forces that had been building up deep in the Earth for hundreds of years were released suddenly on December 26, shaking the ground violently and unleashing a series of killer waves that sped across the Indian Ocean at the speed of a jet airliner.
By the end of the day more than 150,000 people were dead or missing and millions more were homeless in 11 countries, making it perhaps the most destructive tsunami in history.
The epicenter of the 9.0 magnitude quake was under the Indian Ocean near the west coast of the Indonesian island of Sumatra, according to the USGS, which monitors earthquakes worldwide. The violent movement of sections of the Earth’s crust, known as tectonic plates, displaced an enormous amount of water, sending powerful shock waves in every direction.
The earthquake was the result of the sliding of the portion of the Earth’s crust known as the India plate under the section called the Burma plate. The process has been going on for millennia, one plate pushing against the other until something has to give. The result on December 26 was a rupture the USGS estimates was more than 600 miles (1,000 kilometers) long, displacing the seafloor above the rupture by perhaps 10 yards (about 10 meters) horizontally and several yards vertically. That doesn’t sound like much, but the trillions of tons of rock that were moved along hundreds of miles caused the planet to shudder with the largest magnitude earthquake in 40 years. (More)
After three years, perhaps we could ask ourself,
(i) Are were going to come across such tragedy again during our lifetime?
(ii) Are were better prepare now compare to 2004 if it happen again?
(iii) Is Malaysian coastline are safe and well prepared to face such tragedy in near future?
Perhaps we could share something valuable today….