There was medium-sized earthquake the other day, somewhere northwest of Vancouver Island. It didn’t do any damage, although people in Haida Gwai could feel it. Of course, the news media had to get a little hysterical about it, talking up “the big one” that could hit us any day now.

Creative Commons licence – CIR online

Creative Commons licence – CIR online

Well, I guess that’s true. It could hit us tomorrow… could hit us a hundred years from now. Seems there is a major fault that runs from northern Vancouver Island down to northern California. If it lets go all at once, we’d get a Richter Scale 9+ earthquake. Not many buildings in our cities are built to take that much shaking, so there’d be lots of damage and quite a few deaths… but not so many that you should be panicking. You’re more at risk from the chaos that follows, when things like our water, power and communications

So you should do like Max does and get yourself an emergency kit that fits in a small backpack. Here’s what’s in mine:

  •  A couple of space blankets
  • Fire starter kit
  • Water purification pills and a steri-straw
  • A good knife/multitool
  •  15 metres of parachute cord
  •  An all-in one cooking kit with small gas cooker
  • Enough high-energy dried foods to last five days.
  • Hand-cranked flashlight and radio
  • Solar recharger for my cellphone

And if you live right on the coast, the sense to move to high ground in case there’s a tsunami.

But here’s a question. If the threat of an earthquake is so severe, why are they letting people drill and do seismic testing in the fault area. Do we need oil that badly?