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Opinion A significant earthquake in Israel is only a matter of time - if we don't prepare for it we will slide into the abyss Israel today

2023-02-06T19:13:50.744Z


85 years ago there was an earthquake that destroyed half of the city of Safed • While TMA programs benefit only the residents of the center of the country - the north and the south are neglected • Strengthening of buildings, warning sensors and preparedness of municipalities and regional councils will be able to reduce the disaster that is already on its way


Let's start from the end - an earthquake of some kind is going to happen in Israel,

I don't wish for it, it's simply the reality.

The reason for this is that Israel is in one of the most disaster-prone places in terms of earthquakes: the Syrian-African rift that runs through our country through the Jordan Valley to Eilat.

History shows that a significant noise occurs in the area every 85-95 years on average, with the last one happening 96 years ago.

Earthquake damage in a residential building in Israel, photo: documentation of fire and rescue operations

In that earthquake, which originated in the northern Dead Sea, Jerusalem, Jericho, Ramla and other cities were affected, and 285 people were killed in Israel and Jordan.

so what are we doing?

One of the key steps is the TMA 38 program, which aims to strengthen existing buildings against earthquakes, especially where the Syrian-African fault runs. In practice, in these areas, buildings are hardly reinforced because the projects are not profitable for contractors. The economic benefit provided by the program is mainly enjoyed by contractors in the Tel Aviv area , Ramat Gan and Petah Tikva.

Not all buildings are not prepared for an earthquake.

The construction standard in Israel since 1991, the days of the Gulf War, is excellent, because the construction is based on skeleton buildings, meaning that the skeleton is built first and only on top of it is the construction added.

In such a situation, it is the skeleton that absorbs most of the impact of the shock and the structure remains strong.

On the other hand, in the old construction from the days before the Gulf War, the principle was based on gravity.

They built cubes and on top of them they "dressed" another floor of cubes, and the weight was the one that would hold the structure.

This is of course a construction that is not suitable for dealing with earthquakes, and if something gets damaged - the whole building will collapse.

Along with the engineering preparation, there is also the logistical preparation.

The basic premise of any mayor or council is that in the event of an earthquake they will have to deal alone.

The reason for this is that in disasters of this type, the rescuers flock to the areas where the damage is the most severe.

Consider in your mind what would have happened if at the time of the Miron disaster another disaster had occurred at the other end of the country.

Therefore, the mayors must prepare for concern, at least in the first 48 hours after the noise, for the treatment of the wounded, for the supply of food, for housing and for the rescue of trapped people.

All this while the national attention will be at the center of the noise.

Earthquake damage in Turkey, photo: Reuters

At the heart of preparing for the earthquakes, we must not forget the warning systems, because a few extra seconds can make the difference.

Already today there are warning systems of private companies, based on underground sensors, which know how to detect the shock waves ahead of time and give a warning of between 30 and 45 seconds in advance.

Such a period of time could allow citizens to run to defend themselves.

If the Ministry of Innovation, Science and Technology knows how to take this under its wing and responsibility, it will be possible, through investment and development, to increase the length of the alert time to up to a minute and a half.

The earthquake will come, and if we don't prepare for it in such a way that every city can protect itself, we will slide into the abyss.

We have to build an economy for an emergency, strengthen buildings, and build shelters. Faced with this challenge, you need a steel fist, to know how to absorb the next disaster on the way.

were we wrong

We will fix it!

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Source: israelhayom

All news articles on 2023-02-06

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