[EDITORIALS]Shaky Sunday a reminderThe effects of a powerful earthquake off the coast of Japan’s Fukuoka prefecture was felt from Seoul to the southern coast.
Fortunately, no damage was reported, and a tsunami warning for the eastern sea coast and Jeju island was withdrawn after an hour.
The National Meteorological Agency reported that while there could be a few aftershocks, none are predicted to be of a magnitudes that would cause damage in the country. This is fortunate as well.
However, this earthquake reminds us once again that our country will not be immune from earthquakes and tsunamis in the future.
Experts are focusing on the fact that the epicenter of this earthquake was not in the Pacific Ocean, as was in the case of most earthquakes that hit Japan in the past, but in the region between our southeastern coast and Japan’s western coast. Geologists have yet to explain why this earthquake occurred in a region where almost no earthquakes have occurred previously.
While the scientists and the meteorological authorities of the two countries have yet to find the exact cause of the earthquake, the fact remains that an earthquake of a considerable magnitude has occurred in a region that could directly affect our country. This clearly shows that we are no longer a safe zone from earthquakes and tsunamis. Earthquakes and tsunamis on a large scale could now become our problem as well.
We still have vivid memories of the earthquake that hit Indonesia and the following tsunami that destroyed the entire Southeast Asian region at the end of last year.
At the time, the biggest cause of damage was not the earthquake and the tsunami itself but the lack of a warning and information exchange system.
Natural disasters can happen any time. However, while we cannot stop natural disasters, we can lessen the damage by making preparations beforehand.
Now that it is certain that earthquakes occurring in Japan can directly affect our country as well, the government should start to take strict measures beforehand.
The most urgent task is to establish a warning system through close cooperation with the Japanese authorities. Also, more studies on earthquakes and tsunamis as well as diverse prevention efforts should be taken within the country as well.