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Learning Emergency Situations from Mt. Merapi Eruption.

Updated on October 30, 2013
The recent appearance  of  Mt. Merapi peak in October 2013 after several eruptions.
The recent appearance of Mt. Merapi peak in October 2013 after several eruptions. | Source
Merapi before eruption
Merapi before eruption

No one wants any disaster to happen but on the other side, due to the will of nature, no one can hide from natural disaster, especially when it happens all of a sudden.

Here are some lessons I'd like to share when disaster strikes and in the aftermath.

Concern, sympathy, and empathy are remedies:

So many people who do not affected by the disaster or live at save places show their concern, sympathy and empathy for other people who suffer from adversity.They show it by doing some real actions like giving donation, joining actions for collecting donation, or giving contributions based on their skills. Learning from some calamities hit us recently, there are 15 most needed donation by evacuees :

Clean water



Fresh food

Instant food

Infant/children milk,

Baby milk (although breast milk is much more recommended), and baby food.

Milk for adults

Isotonic drinks

Medicine, in the case of Merapi eruption most needed medicine is for soar throat, flu and head ache.

Eye drops.




Psychological tutors/guide for children and adults.

The delivery of donations should be handed in to the committee or organization for disaster management like Red Cross or other local trusted organization or Non Government Organization (NGO) so that the distribution can implemented in organized way and avoiding chaotic situation.

A burst in Merapi active caldera.
A burst in Merapi active caldera. | Source

Some knowledge and skills to share.

Many victims of natural disaster also need non physical aids. If one doesn't have anything to donate then he can contribute his knowledge and skills in the form of:

Medical treatment and check up.

Psychological tutorials and soul-soothing-religious teachings.

Teaching programs for school children, teenagers and young people.

Training for adults who must make aftermath income.

Training for emergency anticipation.

Skill-oriented trainings to empower evacuees.

Entertaining programs.

some advice for Mother with baby :

There were several cases of babies who were sick and died at evacuation camps. According to medical information this fact reiterated lactating mothers about the importance of breastfeeding their babies during their living in evacuation. This strong recommendation is based on some fundamental reasons:

*Breast milk is indispensable. No canned milk can compare to the quality of breast milk not to mention the nutrition in breast milk needed for baby's antibody against illness and in facing unfavorable condition in the camp environment.

*Feeding babies with canned milk needs clean water for watering the milk, cleaning and sterilizing the equipment like bottles/glass, spoon, etc whereas clean water is scare at that place. This drawback may risk babies with unhealthy practices in preparing their milk .

*In case mothers have to give their babies canned milk, they know which milk is suitable and won't cause unwanted reactions to their babies like diarrhea or allergy. Available baby milk at the camp can be an allure for some lactating mothers and forget that their babies want milk with different category.

Kaliadem was covered with volcanic sand from Merapi after its eruption.
Kaliadem was covered with volcanic sand from Merapi after its eruption. | Source

Clean volcanic sands in correct ways :

Pyroclastic produced in volcanic eruption like Merapi brought so much sand, dust and tuff. There should be an effective and save techniques to clean pyroclastic remains like sand and dust which lay on and cover the roofs.

Many people think that flushing it with water is the correct way, but that's not really true since wet sand will make very heavy burden for the roofs and that may cause them collapse.

Cleaning the dust using brooms is a saver way and don't forget to wear mask protecting your mouth, nose, and eyes when you work on it.

Scenic, fertile lands are also the result of volcanism.
Scenic, fertile lands are also the result of volcanism. | Source

Volcanic eruptions also bring benefits :

"Every cloud has a silver lining" that is what a proverb says which is often used to encourage people who get adversity. The proverb reminds us that there are advantages behind every unfavorable condition.

Here are some of those benefits.

Volcanic sand :

It can be utilized in constructing quality buildings due to the silica content in the sand. Sharp structures of silica crystals in the sand can make strong bonds in the concrete.

When the sand is mixed with top soil, it can also make good fertile planting media.

Volcanic Rocks :

People mostly make good use of volcanic rocks for construction too. Weathered rocks will also benefit agriculture sectors because of their useful nutrients for earth.

You can notice facts in nature that countries with volcanic activities are blessed with fertile lands, thanks to the process of volcanism.

Other invaluable benefits of vulcanism are the presence of various mines on earth which make us live prosperously like today. Magma produced by volcanoes in the long run will transform into various minerals like nickels, tins, gold, silver, etc.

So, volcanism takes place today will benefit generations in the future.


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    • agusfanani profile image

      agusfanani 7 years ago from Indonesia

      Thank you for your kindness, daydreamer13.

    • daydreamer13 profile image

      daydreamer13 7 years ago

      Good message. Very well done!

    • agusfanani profile image

      agusfanani 7 years ago from Indonesia

      @PeggyW : Yes, this is some information about what people suffered when they have to live in evacuation camps on the days of Merapi eruption. Thank you Peggy W.

      @rafken : Thank you rafken. I hope that information I present in this hub is useful for everyone.

    • rafken profile image

      rafken 7 years ago from The worlds my oyster

      I enjoyed the read, thanks, it was interesting

    • Peggy W profile image

      Peggy Woods 7 years ago from Houston, Texas

      You gave some excellent ideas for helping people struck with tragedy and you also pointed towards some long range benefits to the land, agriculture and such. Good hub packed with useful information. Rating it such! Thanks!

    • agusfanani profile image

      agusfanani 7 years ago from Indonesia

      Thank you libby101 for dropping by.

    • libby101a profile image

      libby101a 7 years ago from KY

      Very informative. Thanks for sharing. Voted up!!!