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I woke up this morning to reports of the 8.2 magnitude earthquake in Indonesia today. All of the reports I heard stressed that there had only been one small tsunami, and that there didn’t seem to be risk of any more. Here in Oregon, they also stressed that the Oregon Coast was not considered at risk for a tsunami from this earthquake (the Oregon Coast is considered a tsunami zone).
My first reaction was a mild disgust at the fact that the media considered tsunami danger to be the most important part of the news, rather than any damages, deaths, or injuries that might have occurred as a direct result of the quake. After all, 8.2 is a major quake, and the epicenter was on land. Also, Indonesia’s suffered a great deal from earthquakes, major and minor, since the big tsunami of 2004. So, what about the people? How are they doing?
Well, after checking it out a bit, this doesn’t seem to be the kind of quake with thousands dead (thank goodness). The AP is currently reporting ten dead, with a hundred or so injured. I’m sure it will go up, but that’s much better than it could be. So, I guess I can understand why the media isn’t as concerned. Still, I’m sure the Indonesian people need our prayers and whatever assistance we can offer.
The United Methodist Committee on Relief is often one of the first agencies to be on the ground helping in a disaster situation. Their website is http://www.gbgm-umc.org/umcor; that’s where my disaster relief contributions usually go.