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Tuesday, March 2, 2010
Chile Was Prepared for the Quake but Not the Tsunami
Luke 21 :25 And there shall be signs in the sun, and in the moon, and in the stars; and upon the earth distress of nations, with perplexity; the sea and the waves roaring; 26 Men's hearts failing them for fear, and for looking after those things which are coming on the earth: for the powers of heaven shall be shaken. 27 And then shall they see the Son of man coming in a cloud with power and great glory. 28 And when these things begin to come to pass, then look up, and lift up your heads; for your redemption draweth nigh.
In Chile's second largest city, ConcepciÓn, the army has issued a "silence" order on some urban blocks so rescue workers can hear the possible tapping of survivors under the rubble of the massive 8.8-magnitude earthquake that hit the country on Feb. 27. The quake may be, as Chilean President Michelle Bachelet said on Sunday, "an emergency unparalleled" in the country's history. But the death toll - fewer than 1,000 so far, despite the quake's being one of the strongest ever recorded - is a tribute to Chile's remarkable preparation and response.
Remarkable, that is, in terms of coping with what happened on land. Disaster officials now say the majority of Chile's fatalities may have resulted from the temblor-generated tsunami waves that slammed coastal towns like ConstituciÓn, where 350 people were killed. And that points up the only area in which Chile and its government may have fallen short in this disaster. (See pictures of the earthquake in Chile.)