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Earthquake ponders (Vancouver)

Earthquake ponders (Vancouver)

Old May 30th 2008, 6:16 am
  #46  
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Default Re: Earthquake ponders (Vancouver)

Originally Posted by MB-Realtor View Post
in an "up-wind" thread I made a point about living life big, taking risks with your future life etc.etc.... You made a good point about taking the careful route.

Its interesting (to me) that you are quite happy to risk your very life to a perceived better experience, than advocate risking their/{your) financial future.

This is not a criticism's in any way, just an observation of how we all view different risks in life's journey.
That's an interesting point, MB-Realtor. You've made me consider my responses in that thread and this one. Yes, I can see that they're paradoxical, even contradictory.

I suppose, if I stop to think about it, it's the fact that there were young children involved in the one situation and there aren't any in the other situation. That is, when I move to the BC coast, I'm not going to be taking any children with me. So, I'll be incurring the risk on my own account and not on my children's account.

Another thing that I have only now realized, since your challenge has forced me to examine my inconsistency, is that my knee-jerk reaction in that other thread reflected my horror of poverty. It takes only a second’s analysis for me to know where that comes from – my childhood in Africa.

Nearly all white people were middle class at a minimum. Poor people were almost always black. Very few white people were poor. They were called “poor whites.” It was one of the most shameful labels available. No one ever came right out and told me this. I just absorbed the message by osmosis. I think the implication was that, in a situation in which whites had many advantages, their slipping through the cracks was considered doubly disgraceful. Anyway, I certainly got the memo that poverty was a fate worse than death.

At a conscious level I disagree with that. In fact, back when I’d applied to immigrate to Canada, I couldn’t wait to get away from Southern Africa. When I arrived in Canada I felt very relieved to have escaped from that situation.

But intellectual opinions, of which we are conscious, often are different from emotional reactions, whose source often is unconscious. The fact that I had such a visceral reaction to the spectre of poverty but that I glibly said I was willing to die in an earthquake demonstrates, I think, that I do consider poverty to be a fate worse than death – very literally.

Again, please let me emphasize that I don’t believe that in the cold light of day. I’m just saying that’s where my feelings can take me.

There is a third issue too. Existing in Calgary feels to me like a living death. It’s not that it’s such a terrible place. As a matter of fact it’s looking lovely and green right now. And it is close to the Rockies, and they are beautiful and all that.

It’s just that, to me, Calgary is a utilitarian place. The oil industry is the main reason we’re here. Most of our friends are from the oil industry. That whole scene has reached its Use By date for me.

Earlier today I was thinking about the pep talk I’d given someone who didn’t like living in a small town. I don’t think oldbag was the poster who had started the particular thread I was recalling. But, if I remember correctly, oldbag joined the discussion part way through. She complained about the small town in which she lived. I said that one could choose one’s attitude towards a place. There always were some nice things about a place, and one could appreciate those nice things.

Well, today I decided that I’d partly changed my mind about that.

I still do believe what I said earlier, up to a point. I know people who have been in unbelievable situations, who have been incredibly resilient, who managed to find joy amidst the horrific conditions, and who find reasons to be happy, even now.

But I thought to myself, “It’s not as if I’m a prisoner or anything like that. I don’t have to be heroic, make the best of this situation, and soldier on in Calgary. I can just get up and leave.”

I don’t presume to read oldbag’s mind, but perhaps her thinking runs along those lines too. Whatever her reasons, I know she’s preparing to return to the UK, and I’m glad for her.

I could have responded to you by saying that, in the other thread under discussion, there were children involved, whereas my move to the west coast wouldn’t put any children at risk. It was an honest response, and I imagine it would have been plausible enough.

But, on its own, it would have been an incomplete response. I felt that, since I’d so freely accused you and others of being reckless in that other thread, the decent thing to do would be to 'fess up that I had another couple of motivations in that thread and this one: (1) a profound fear of poverty, and (2) a sense that being in Calgary is not much of a life.

And now I've just realized another logical extension of that. As I've just stated, the oil industry has provided our bread and butter. It has helped us to prevent the catastrophe of poverty. But that comes at the cost of living in a place that feels sterile to me. So now I'm willing to walk away from that so that I can live amongst the greenery that I love, by the ocean that I love, in an earthquake zone. So does that mean that I'm about to follow your suggestion of living life big? I guess it does.
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Old May 30th 2008, 7:20 am
  #47  
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Default Re: Earthquake ponders (Vancouver)

phew ,, ok back to the firetrucks that suck water out of the sea , can these be used as family cars ?

i always remember a trip to a science museum where you could stand in a kitchen then the whole room shook and things fell around you ,quite realistic in showing you the power of a quake -but it made me think what if you were in this room whilst a real earthquake struck would one set of vibrations cancel out the other and you would just stand still whilst all around shook?

its bothered me for quite a time now and i feel better for talking about it.
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Old May 30th 2008, 11:49 am
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Default Re: Earthquake ponders (Vancouver)

Originally Posted by Biiiiink View Post
I know this is an earthquake thread but my kid came home saying something about tornado drill at school. I don't know what it was other than "it was fun" I hope he remembers something because I have no idea what I'd be supposed to do. Basement I guess, and hang on tight?
I went through a US airport recently - Denver I think. The men's washroom was a designated tornado shelter. I can't think of a better place to shit yourself.
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Old May 30th 2008, 3:39 pm
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Old May 30th 2008, 3:48 pm
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Default Re: Earthquake ponders (Vancouver)

Originally Posted by Souvenir View Post
I find that rather callous and unusual for you. Much as I dislike Vancouver, I don't relish the prospect of it being razed, with a probably large toll in human life.

Yes, that's exactly what I meant.

KILL! KILL! KILL!
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Old May 30th 2008, 3:50 pm
  #51  
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Default Re: Earthquake ponders (Vancouver)

http://www.macleans.ca/article.jsp?c..._105684_105684
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Old May 30th 2008, 4:35 pm
  #52  
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Default Re: Earthquake ponders (Vancouver)

Originally Posted by MB-Realtor View Post
in an "up-wind" thread I made a point about living life big, taking risks with your future life etc.etc.... You made a good point about taking the careful route.

Its interesting (to me) that you are quite happy to risk your very life to a perceived better experience, than advocate risking their/{your) financial future.
If I am thinking of the same thread, these are very different issues. In that thread a couple with a young family were asking whether they should move to Canada for a job with a very modest income and with no money of their own. Other posters were saying "go for it" or "you only live once" and so on.

There is, of course, risk associated with everything in life. When considering a life changing event like emigration it is important to evaluate all the risks involved and what can be done to mitigate then. Only then is it possible to make an informed decision on whether the potential rewards are greater than the incurred risk.

I believe that Judy's concern was that a worst case scenario should be a part (even if only a small part) of this evaluation process. And, I understand that she was motivated to make this warning because she has personal knowledge of expats whose reality turned out to be their worst case. It was the families, particularly the young children, who had to suffer the consequences.

Coming back to the earthquake, it is reasonable to assume (though not certain) that there will be a monster 'quake somewhere on of just off the BC Coast sometime between today and 200 years hence. If that happens in the next 40 years there is a possibility that we will be involved in some way, and there is a possibility that the effects will be severe.

Our judgment is that the risk of being caught up in the severe effects of a big 'quake is very small. Even so, we have taken the easy precautions to mitigate this risk: adequate life insurance, buildings and contents insurance, a survival pack and so on. We are left with a risk that we are prepared to take for the reward of living in such a wonderful place. If it turns out to be a bad gamble, we are the only ones who will suffer the consequences of our decision.
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Old May 30th 2008, 4:43 pm
  #53  
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Default Re: Earthquake ponders (Vancouver)

Originally Posted by Surrey Expat View Post

Wow - that's a fairly starck picture.

Very intresting.

My colleague told me they had to have done something about st Paul's by now. But clearly they still hadn't in 2005.

Gryph
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Old May 30th 2008, 6:32 pm
  #54  
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Default Re: Earthquake ponders (Vancouver)

Originally Posted by gryphea View Post
Wow - that's a fairly starck picture.

Very intresting.

My colleague told me they had to have done something about st Paul's by now. But clearly they still hadn't in 2005.

Gryph
I work in the old part of St Paul's and the emergency dept is just
below us.They did do some improvement to earthquake proof
the old brick building a few years back.No one knows whether
it will be adequate enough when the 'big one' hits.

Yoong
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Old May 30th 2008, 11:12 pm
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Default Re: Earthquake ponders (Vancouver)

There's also a large earthquake risk out East along the St Lawrence valley, the Gaspe Peninsula gets them fairly often, and there's always the worry that Montreal will get hit by 'the big one'.

I think I'll stay put out here in the seismically stable prairies, nothing to worry about here... apart from tornados, hail, flood, forest fires and mosquitos!
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Old May 31st 2008, 3:16 am
  #56  
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Default Re: Earthquake ponders (Vancouver)

Originally Posted by ADAMC View Post
I think I'll stay put out here in the seismically stable prairies, nothing to worry about here... apart from tornados, hail, flood, forest fires and mosquitos!
Yep, they're deadly them mossies!!
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Old May 31st 2008, 5:29 am
  #57  
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Default Re: Earthquake ponders (Vancouver)

Originally Posted by ClareBC View Post
Yep, they're deadly them mossies!!
Does anybody know which parts of Vancouver Island will suffer most,if a earthquake happens.
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Old May 31st 2008, 5:52 am
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Default Re: Earthquake ponders (Vancouver)

Originally Posted by kastan View Post
Does anybody know which parts of Vancouver Island will suffer most,if a earthquake happens.
Depends where the epicentre is, Victoria is a hotspot. If it is off the coast as predicted the west coast (of the island) is toast.
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Old May 31st 2008, 6:14 am
  #59  
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Default Re: Earthquake ponders (Vancouver)

Originally Posted by Surrey Expat View Post
If it is off the coast as predicted the west coast (of the island) is toast.
Kastan, for clarification, the west coast of Vancouver Island is particularly vulnerable to a tsunami. Port Alberni was damaged by a tsunami set off by an earthquake in Alaska in 1964, for example.
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Old May 31st 2008, 7:02 am
  #60  
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Default Re: Earthquake ponders (Vancouver)

Originally Posted by JonboyE View Post
I did notice in California that some people won't park under bridges, and leave gaps under subways in traffic line ups. But then, everyone knows the Californians are all a bit crazy.
To be fair to Californians, the Northridge Earthquake is pretty fresh in the minds.

The Californians produce excellent public information (http://www.daretoprepare.org/) that seems to get much wider promotion there than the information available from PEP here. It is not something that people seem to worry about here or perhaps they just don't publicly discuss the importance of family evacuation plans. It is surprising because whilst the risk is possibly considered lower, there is probably a higher chance (due to geographical features) of families being separated because of closures of bridges and emergency response routes closed after an earthquake. I certainly don't see as many homes in Vancouver fitted with strapping etc on furniture.


Originally Posted by JonboyE View Post
We don't have a drill at work. When the last one struck we all just ran into the carpark. As we caught our breath we looked around and said "where's Erin?" She emerged a few moments later looking very red faced. It seems that at the moment the building started to shake she was in the washroom with her pants around her ankles. Being caring and compassionate employers we laughed. A lot.
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