Earthquake Update: Be Alert for Aftershocks

Here is another unverified report from Peter who just got back from Balik Pulau. The disaster areas, namely the coastal villages that were struck by a tsunami following the earthquake off Sumatra have been cordoned off to facilitate rescue efforts. Lives were lost, injured or unaccounted for. Fishermen at sea when the massive waves came are still missing. Many buildings were badly damaged. Two people who were fishing by the shore suddenly discovered that they could see their line and hook and the bottom of the sea. They looked up and saw a fast approaching wall of water in the distance and ran for their lives up to higher ground. They lived to tell this story. Many did not. Please pray for those who were injured or are still missing and the families of those who lost their loved ones in this tragedy.

I believe Penang experienced an aftershock at around 5:00pm just now. I could be mistaken but I thought I felt the floor moving again. Maybe it was just my mind playing tricks on me. I am still unsettled after that first tremor. However, if there indeed was an aftershock, it could trigger another tsunami, albeit one less damaging than the first. This is not a good time to be near the coasts or out at sea. Be alert. I hope the entry on what to do in the event of an earthquake may be helpful.

Author: Peter Tan

Peter Gabriel Tan. Penangite residing in the Klang Valley. Blissfully married to Wuan. A LaSallian through and through. Slave to three cats. Wheelchair user since 1984. End-stage renal disease since 2017. Principal Facilitator at Peter Tan Training specialising in Disability Equality Training. Former columnist of Breaking Barriers with The Borneo Post. This blog chronicles my life, thoughts and opinions. Connect with me on Twitter and Facebook.

20 thoughts on “Earthquake Update: Be Alert for Aftershocks”

  1. Peter, the tsunami that hit 5 countries in South Asia has reached over 2,200 deaths… Didn’t really notice the aftershock at 5pm though…

  2. Peter,

    Do you have any news of Tanjung Tokong – have relatives there but unable to contact them. I know that Miami Beach was the most eastern part of the north coast hit by the tsunami, but I am a bit worried about Tj Tokong as my cousins lived right next to the beach, near the Tua Peh Kong temple.


  3. Andy,
    I was just guessing. Could be my rattled nerves working overtime.

    Thank you for your concern.

    I heard the Tanjong Tokong area was badly hit but sorry I do not have news from there. Hope your cousins are safe.

  4. KTemoc,
    I heard the Tua Peh Kong temple area was quite badly affected by the waves. What I heard is the “hiau lor” also washed out into the sea. Cannot confirm this though.

  5. KSTang,
    Since there are no news on the ferry and Penang Bridge, I guess both are still functioning. I hope the authorities will do a thorough check on the bridge to assure that the structure is sound and safe.

    Excerpt from The Star:

    The Penang Bridge, however, was declared safe after specialist engineers carried out visual and structural checks on the bridge and found it unaffected by the tidal wave and earthquake.

    Works Minister Datuk Seri S. Samy Vellu has directed Penang Bridge Sdn Bhd to do more structural checks on the bridge, with the help of the Public Works Department (PWD).

    “We are taking this very seriously as this is the only bridge linking the mainland to the island,” he said after presenting prizes to winners of Astro-Vaanavil?s poetry contest in Ipoh Sunday.

    Go to for photos.

  6. Peter & kstang, thanks mateys – am devastated but keeping fingers crossed. Will be reading both your blogs for 1st hand account – thanks again for the feedback

  7. The poetry contest that was held last week. My brother George Manos from the U.S. attended. We have not heard from him. Do you have information on where it was held and phone numbers we can contact?

  8. May Family,
    I hope John Mayin has beed found.

    The following are the phone numbers of Operation Rooms I took from our local newspapers. I hope it helps.

    Penang Island:
    04- 2621819 / 2656308

    North Seberang Prai:

    Kuala Muda, Kedah:

    Langkawi, Kedah:


    Fisheries Dept:

  9. I an due to travel to Penang with my wife and 2 young children in a few weeks Do you think it will be safe . Our thouhts are with everyone out there now.

  10. David,
    If there are no strong aftershocks to churn up another tsunami, I suppose it will be safe. I just got back from a short holiday at Gurney Drive, one of the affected places, and all was almost back to normal.

  11. I heard that there will be another wave tonight,is it true?

    Don’t know the penang bridge will jam or not??

  12. Loh,
    Only get your facts from verified sources. There are a lot of unfounded rumours swirling around that are causing unneeded anxieties. There will only be a tsunami if there is a string earthquake. Keep your ears glued to the radio or eyes to the tv for the latest news.

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