China’s early earthquake warning system gives people life-saving seconds to prepare for tremor
By Sarah Zheng
Technology introduced after devastating 2008 quake alerted people up to 71 seconds before Tuesday’s tremor in Sichuan.
People across Sichuan were given vital seconds to prepare for Tuesday’s deadly earthquake thanks to China’s early earthquake warning system.
Developed by the China Earthquake Administration in the wake of the 2008 magnitude 7.9 quake in Wenchuan, which left more than 80,000 people dead, the system alerted some people in the region more than a minute before the initial tremor struck in Jiuzhaigou county.
In the provincial capital Chengdu, about 300km from the epicentre, people were notified of the impending quake a full 71 seconds beforehand, via messages sent to their mobile phones or transmitted via public address terminals, mainland media reported.