Here at OSM, we’ve often reported on how social media comes into its own at times of crisis and emergency, such as the Chile earthquake last year, the Boulder Colorado wildfires and also the New Zealand earthquake in Christchurch that struck last September. Another powerful earthquake has now struck in New Zealand, again in the Christchurch area, in which dozens of people are reported killed, with numbers likely to rise.
Again the use of social networking sites such as Twitter and Facebook are prevalent in helping out and Peter Fowler on Hawke’s Bay Today has rounded up some of the Twitter pages that you should use to find out and share information. Popular hashtags at the moment and recommended are #eqnz, #christchurch and #chch while trending terms are #christchurch and #bobparker. You can also find out localized information on the @hawkesbaytoday Twitter account or at Twitter account @nzherald.
Over on Metro an article by Tom Phillips is extremely helpful and again recommends #eqnz and also #eqnzContact. For useful information head to these official Twitter accounts, the government’s @NZcivildefence or also @TelecomNZ. If you want to see tweets or add about people confirmed to be safe then go to @safeinchch on Twitter. A Facebook support page about the New Zealand earthquake can also be found at this link.
A Google help website has also been established which is a Christchurch Earthquake Person Finder. If you head to the site you have options to either look for someone or add information about someone. Already 3,600 records have been added from phone calls and also through Facebook. There’s also another site at eq.org.nz which is detailing where to get medical help, maps and news on hazard zones.
This just goes to show how social media, social networking and modern technology really can help out in times of crisis and reading some of the tweets and posts so far, you can’t help but be proud of how people pull together to help out as much as they can. Our thoughts go out to all of those people in New Zealand affected by the quake.
If you have any thoughts or experiences of the quake that you wish to share then please send us your comments.