Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Earthquakes in Guatemala

Six earthquakes struck Guatemala on Monday. From Nic Wirtz contributing for the Christian Science Monitor
It was a rude shock for most Guatemalans as they returned to the grind following a weekend of Independence Day celebrations. Buildings shook in the capital and schools closed throughout the country as the midday quakes struck. The tremors provoked landslides in some areas. At least three were killed.
Emergency services are battling to restore power in the region and ensure that recent torrential rain combined with the earthquakes does not result in more landslides.
All Guatemalan presidents have had to deal with natural disasters on their watch and Colom is no different. In 2010 alone, Guatemala had Tropical Storm Agatha, the eruption of the Pacaya Volcano, and a sinkhole. Mudslides were caused by Agatha as well as other storms throughout the year. They continue to be an all too regular occurrence as three children died in a mudslide a day after the earthquakes. (Update - At least fifteen now believed dead.)

While it is always terrible when these earthquakes strike causing death and destruction, yesterday's multiple earthquakes do not appear to have caused too much physical damage and large-scale loss of life.
However, it brings up a reason to once again remind everyone that President Obama and the US government have failed to respond to Guatemala's request for temporary protected status (TPS) for its nationals living in the US. Not everyone has given up hope.

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