There have been several ominous predictions regarding earthquakes and Jamaica in recent times.
Jamaica is situated in an active zone of seismic activity, and over 200 tremors are recorded annually, according to the Earthquake Unit at The University of the West Indies.
The Office of Disaster Preparedness and Emergency Management (ODPEM) has designated January Earthquake Awareness Month under the theme ‘Community Strengthening and Awareness… the Recipe for Building Earthquake Resilience’ as the agency extends the period of activity from the traditional week.
The launch yesterday (January 6) featured speakers from ODPEM, the UWI Earthquake Unit, the Ministry of Education and the Ministry of Local Government and Community Development.
State Minister in the Ministry of Local Government Colin Fagan highlighted government’s continued efforts towards ensuring that legislative support is in place for disaster risk management initiatives.
“We will continue to introduce the appropriate technologies and programmes to protect against damages from earthquakes… The Ministry remains committed to advancing the efforts of building a Jamaica that is resilient to disasters in general and certainly for earthquakes,” Fagan said.
The Earthquake Unit recorded that the island experienced 221 earthquakes last year and with the researchers expecting a major quake in the near future Acting Director General of ODPEM Richard Thompson emphasized the importance of community involvement in earthquake preparedness.
Earthquake Awareness Month is aimed at educating the public about earthquake preparedness and mitigation.
Source: Jamaica Observer