Wednesday, March 07, 2007

Holy cow! The ground is moving

Holy cow! The ground is moving. Well, not actually. Most people on ground level yesterday at around 12.15 pm or 1.50pm in Singapore would not have felt nor experienced the earthquake tremors that enveloped the island due to a 6.x earthquake on the Sumatran island. I know because I didn't feel the tremors when I was at the third level of one building and walking back to my office's building during the 11.50-12.10pm time window when tremors struck the island yesterday. I phoned home at about 1pm to check if the tremors were felt in my 7th floor apartment. It wasn't, though we learnt later on the news that Pasir Ris, which is near Sengkang, experienced the tremors. Apparently, some people in Potong Pasir felt the tremors at near ground level.

But when the tremors struck again at around 1.50-2pm (didn't read the exact time, except that I was preparing for a meeting at 2pm yesterday) I was at my desk on the seventh floor. I felt my chair moving back and forth on its own while I was working on my computer. It was surreal and yes, there was a sense of dizziness. I evacuated the building immediately, walking down all 7 floors. This wasn't that bad. Some people on other parts of the island reportedly walked down more than 30 floors, not daring to risk the lifts.

This is unusual, not that Singapore doesn't experience tremors that originate from afar, but that it is so widespread this time around. Well, as expected, it turned out to be from Indonesia where the epicentre was reportedly about 50 km from the city of Padang on the western coast of Sumatra. Unfortunately, 71 people reportedly lost their lives there.

Read more about the quake here:

Singapore shaken after quakes in Indonesia
Powerful Indonesian quake kills at least 71
BBC: Indonesian earthquake

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