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It is difficult to predict earthquakes: Expert

Written by: Staff

Tirupati, Mar 2: It is difficult to predict the occurrence of earthquake with accuracy though it is possible to get the indications before the disaster strikes, Indian Meteorological Department (IMD) Additional Director General H N Srivatsav has said.

Speaking to sources, Mr Srivatsav said yesterday (Mar 1, 2006) it was possible to get the indications of an earthquake by gauging the destructive waves generated from the epicentre.

He said the time taken for destruction to begin was only a few seconds depending on the epicentre and this was sufficient for shutting down nuclear and other power plants and evacuation of people in some cases.

The seismographs need to be on broadband and connected with VSAT telemetering system for rapid determination of source parameters. He also emphasised on the need for deployment of intensity meters in select regions of the country.

At present, there was no short-term earthquake prediction capability with any degree of reliability. The processes that give rise to earthquake hazards are fundamentally complex in nature due to the heterogeneous nature of rocks and the uncertain state of force triggering the events.

High-speed computer and communication systems have made it possible for rapid assessment of after effects of the earthquake.

The scientist said it was still possible to reduce the impact of the disaster like saving human life by evacuation. However, to do this, the technology gap between processing epicentre data and the speed of communication for disaster management was essential.


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