Haiti Quake Maybe Just a Prelude

Haiti Quake Maybe Just a Prelude
By Julia Whitty
Wed Jan. 13, 2010 5:57 PM PST

The tragic intersection between poverty and nature that rent Haiti
yesterday may not be the end of its seismic troubles. Science Now
reports that yesterday's 7.0 temblor ruptured only a part of the same
segment that 240 years ago unleashed a 7.5 quake—20 times more
powerful than yesterday's.

Worse, the potential for even greater destruction exists. In 1751, a
magnitude 8.0—32 times yesterday's quake—struck farther along the same
fault system off the southern shore of the island of Hispaniola that
Haiti shares with the Dominican Republic. A couple of months after
that a magnitude 7.5 occurred nearby. Plus a separate active fault
crosses through the north coast of the island.

Scientists are concerned the long-sleeping Caribbean has now been

Add to that the fact that Port-au-Prince is built on unstable
sediments not bedrock and that the city lacks any kind of building
code and you have a recipe for repeat disasters, and then some.

So can we at least try to include along with the "massive aid racing"
to Haiti some sober planning... maybe a "building code" to alleviate
the failed state in our own hemipshere? How about some genuine long-
term help to heal the bones of that country? Does Wyclef have to do it


Att'n California
"God is watching you."
-- Pat Robertson