RT Cunningham


Earthquakes and the Earthquakes I Remember Feeling in Olongapo

earthquakes According to the Earthquake Track website [today] there have been 31 earthquakes felt in Olongapo in the last year. I don’t agree. I’ve only felt three since I’ve lived here (that I can remember since 2006).

Earthquakes happen all the time in the Philippines but we don’t feel all of them, especially when the magnitude is low. We only notice the big ones.

A large truck on the street generates more vibrations than a low-magnitude earthquake. I guess you could say the trucks cause earthquakes too.

The Earthquakes I Remember

The three earthquakes I remember are:

There was little damage to the house each time. The 2015 earthquake caused damage to some underground plumbing. That was more the fault of shoddy workmanship than the earthquake itself.

Who’s Afraid of a Little Shake?

I am! But only if it lasts longer than a few seconds, like the last one. I’ve felt dozens of shakes since I left home in 1978. I didn’t even know what an earthquake felt like when I was living in Arizona, before and after the military.

I experienced my first when I was stationed in San Diego (1979-1981). It it felt like someone was trying to pull my chair out from under me. I wouldn’t have known what happened if someone hadn’t told me.

Another time was when I was stationed on Okinawa. That was either 1987 or 1988. Josie, my wife, was with me for six months and we were in an apartment made completely of cement. We ran for the door that time.

I didn’t feel any earthquakes while stationed in Hawaii or North Carolina.

I Expect Earthquakes in the Philippines

As long as the epicenter isn’t close to Olongapo or Subic Bay, we should be fine. The house is more reinforced cement than anything else. It would take a lot more than magnitude 6 earthquake to do more than superficial damage.

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By RT Cunningham
July 12, 2017