Minister calls for earthquake readiness

Due to frequent earthquakes in 2018, the issue has become a challenge for Myanmar, said U Win Myat Aye, Union minister for Social Welfare, Relief and Resettlement.

“Earthquakes have become a challenge that must be seriously addressed in Myanmar,” he said on Thursday.

Myanmar was hit by 31 earthquakes in January, 13 in February, 11 in March and 20 in April ranging in magnitude from three to six on the Richter scale. As earthquakes can occur at anytime, anywhere, preparations and prevention are very important, he said.

“It is important that all people cooperate to arrange preventive measures against quakes,” he said.

Myanmar faces a higher risk of earthquakes than other Southeast Asian nations. Quakes are unpredictable and very dangerous. Landslides, fires and tsunamis may result from earthquakes, so we need to be prepared, U Win Myat Aye said.

“The destructive power of earthquakes is huge. It can affect the nation’s development and delay it for many years,” he said.

Major quakes that resulted in deaths and property damage in Myanmar include the Tarlay quake in March 2011, the Thabeikyin quake in November 2012, the Kalay quake in April 2016 and the Chauk quake in August 2016.

Many quake awareness talks and rehearsals are being conducted throughout the country as the number of quakes has increased this last year, he added.

Vice President U Henry Van Thio, the national natural disaster management committee chair, said at the committee meeting on May 15 that quake awareness talks and rehearsals need to be held often to increase preparedness.

Source: Myanmar Times

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