Letter: In reference to the seismic prediction of an earthquake in the Caribbean


Dear Sir:

In reference to the seismic prediction, warning that an earthquake might occur in the Caribbean, makes me remember the older folks, who told us stories about how Grenada and St Vincent was one big piece of land, and it was divided up into smaller islands that stretch from St Vincent in the north, to Grenada in the south by natural disasters.

One of the legendary stories told to us when were small children was that there was a big earthquake in that region and the land sunk to the bottom of the ocean. The other story is that there was a volcano eruption and the land was broken up into many pieces and formed all those small islands in the Grenadines.

Imagine the stories that were told to us are true, if the seismic prediction is correct, maybe the islands of St Vincent and Grenada could be affected again, because they shared those islands in the Grenadines. And we don’t really know what will happen to those islands, whether or not they might disappear or maybe more islands will surface from the ocean.

An earthquake of such magnitude of 8.0 can be very disastrous to the entire Caribbean. People who reside on the lower coastal areas of the Caribbean coastline stand a great chance of experiencing a second disaster such as a tsunami. A tsunami can cause thousands of people to lose their lives in rushing tidal waves, and it will be a catastrophe.

The seismic warning can only make us aware of what we might expect, but in reality there is nothing much we can do to prevent such a disaster from happening. We can prepare for a hurricane, which sometimes takes days before it hits land and destroys buildings and vegetation. But with an earthquake, the only solution is to build buildings that can resist powerful tremors and such preparedness technology is not introduced in the Caribbean islands as yet. We don’t experience dangerous earthquakes and tsunami.

In spite the fact that we are in this predicted danger zone, there are some Caribbean citizens who have a different belief based on biblical philosophy, about what might cause such a powerful earthquake to affect our lives and property. And whenever they have to discuss about seismic prediction warnings, they are using biblical scriptures to justify that is, because we disobeyed God, the earthquake is a punishment for our wickedness. Unfortunately, it is very hard to convince people with such biblical beliefs to look at the issue from a scientific point of view.

When Haiti was devastated by a strong earthquake some months ago, these same religious people were saying that Haitians disobeyed God, and God is punishing them for their sins. However, when I read the news about seismic prediction warning, I remember the stories the old folks told us about that large land-mass that once covered square miles areas from St Vincent to Grenada and how it was destroyed by volcanic eruption and powerful earthquakes. Yet, I still wonder why the old folks never said it was God’s punishment that broke up that large land-mass and created the Grenadines islands, because the Grenadines islands are really beautiful.

Hudson George
Toronto, Ontario



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