Aug 26, 2011

Earthquake Survival 101 -what to do

5 months ago there was that terrible magnitude 9 quake that struck Japan. A few days ago, there was one in the US too. It's becoming really important to learn how to deal with that sudden force of mother nature.

The most important thing is to get away from falling objects. Lamps, dishes, maybe even refrigerators. When an earthquake occurs, the thing you should be doing is to get under a desk. (or anything that would protect you)
After the shaking ends, some say that you should turn off the gas. But that's only the case in a quake that didn't cause much damage.  If your house is in a bad condition, leave it as quickly as possible. 
Some homes in some areas might not be built to withstand a major earthquake, especially where you don't have them so often, so be careful in those places.
If you're at work or school when it comes, unless your house is very, very near it, you sholdn't try to get back there by foot or by car, because the roads will probably be very crowded. The very same situation happened in Japan after March 11th too.
Imagine this on the road, it'll probably take hours to go a mile! The best solution is to just stay where you are till the roads clear.

And, I hope that this will never happen again, but still, watch out for malfunctioning nuclear reactors. The Japanese government didnt do a good job of reporting the news and evacuation from the site didn't go very quickly. I don't know about the other governments, but you should still be aware of this fact that nuclear reactors sometimes just can't withstand an earthquake. 

Aug 25, 2011

How to Demolish a Building

Even the tallest buildings will have to be dismantled at some point. So how do they do it?
The simplest way (also the most exciting) is to use explosives.
But of course, if you did that in Tokyo or Manhattan or any big city with lots of buildings, it would be...
well, they won't do it.

But there's another way, which is called the first" cut-and-down method" . To do this, the lowest part of the building is cut away. then, they lower the WHOLE BUILDING inch by inch and then repeat the process again. Do this many times and you get a roof of a skyscraper.
There's a video of the process on this site, it's very weird to watch. demolishing a skyscraper (it's in the middle of the sidebar on the right.)
Typically, it takes about a week to shorten the building by 1 floor.

But still, it's very silent and safe because all the chaos are happening on the ground, not like the usual procedure that takes it down from the top.