Shaken loose

Its been an incredible few weeks in my home city of Christchurch.

6 months after ‘the big one’ (September 2010, rs7.1) a 6.3 earthquake hit the city and caused major damage and loss of life. If your interested in more there’s plenty of news on it out there. I’ve not seen much of it having only just got electricity back on and waiting for water etc still.

I was in work at the time, 22kms or so away from the epicenter, having lunch. We’d not had an serious aftershock for a few months so initially you stand there thinking yeah. Then you hit the deck and crawl under your desk. Luckily this is a well built modern low rise office still the result was quite a mess (photo courtesy of Graeme Black).

Driving home (via the hospital, Pam couldn’t leave work at this time) the scale of the quake slowly filtered though the news channels the CBD was a mess, Cathedral had collapsed, and the closer I got to home (via Centarus etc as the roads were stuffed) the more worried I got, I saw many destroyed houses and roads almost impassable.

Ferrymead bridge was closed, luckily I had returned via Heathcote and detoured round Mt pleasant. It turned out home was still standing, unlike many on my street, massive amounts of stuff inside damaged, cracked block work, windows almost falling out. I found Mogglet in the conservatory locked into position 4 hours after the quake and she hadn’t moved.

It took 5-6 days to tidy up,  a trailer load of broken stuff dumped. 1 evacuation ( luckily just for a day). Over 2 weeks to get power and near 3 for water.

I wake up this morning to see Japan in utter devastation. I’m pretty speechless over that its such total destruction with numerous nuclear plants in trouble, whole cities on fire, tsunami wiping out 10’s of kms inland. Our team of Japanese USAR is heading back after 22 days straight working Chch to help out.

This taken the morning of the quake, no pot of gold:(

During the first week we had to use the 4wd emergency track to access our house, Tuesday, 1 week after the quake was a beautiful sunrise.

All my thoughts are with the people of Japan in dealing with and coping during the aftermath of their 8.9 earthquake and subsequent tsunami.

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