Christchurch earthquake photos are located exactly with latitude and longitude tags so you can easily find relevant information about the sites.
[Click through to the post on the 2011/02/22 quake. ]
There was a big earthquake there and here is one of my favorite literary curmudgeons lying on the floor to prove it.
It seems so appropriate that Hitchens is cheek to jowl with The Elements of Style. Especially with the basset hound looking skeptically at us. Click the picture above for many more, more serious photographs and then click on those pictures to get more photos by that particular photographer.
I am now going to try and find Google Earth – Street Views of the exact locations shown in the photographs. I think this one is out by the salt ponds east of downtown.
This is the power of the internet! Here are two comparison photographs taken from almost the same spot showing the power of an earthquake and of the internet. The comparison was made by me, a person who has never been there and lives on the other side of the Pacific Ocean. It took me an hour to find the exact location (-43.5255, 172.7223) but you can cut and copy those coordinates into your GoogleEarth.com and go directly to that exact spot in seconds. Once there, on Google Earth you can click on the various icons to find all sorts of interesting stuff about the place.
Having found the first location it was much easier to reverse the camera, move a little bit and find this second photo’s location with the much more interesting crack. (-43.5253, 172.7232)
I have blogged about the Caffe Roma (-43.5302, 172.6341) and would have about this great looking place called the daily bagel, Victoria St, Christchurch 8041, New Zealand(03) 374 9905 (-43.5213, 172.6283), a short walk up the street, had I known about it. I began my adult life at the Coexistence Bagel Shop at Grant and Green Streets in San Francisco, California, back in 1958.
This building is ¾th of a mile north west of the iconic church.
The photo above was taken 487 meters due south of the Christchurch cathedral’s front door. In the original Google Earth Street View you can see the cathedral’s spire to the left. The photo below was taken only 180 meters due east of the cathedral; it is Westende Gemtime jewelry shop at 184 Manchester St. (-43.5309, 172.6397) The spires are also visible a block away in the original street view photo.
It looks like this crack leading from the lower right window toward the corner of the building was about to cause a collapse even before the quake hit. Even the paint is spalling off. Also the decorative border at the top appears to have major cracks
There will probably be more photos of devastation coming out of Christchurch but it doesn’t look like the newer buildings were too badly hit. We can hope the namesake cathedral survived unscathed.
These collapsed buildings are a reminder not to spend much time in or even near an unreinforced brick building when in earthquake prone country. Christchurch, New Zealand was always high on my hoped for places to go.
Christchurch is called the garden city because of the many parks carefully planned into the landscape. The river Avon meanders right through the middle of town and past the iconic church for which the city was named. We have been watching for deals on the web for airfares to there from San Francisco, California, and I almost went a couple of times when I could get a round trip for under $1,000. But, it didn’t quite happen. A year ago there was a really big quake M 7.8, on the southwest coast of the South Island of New Zealand, (-45.7620, 166.5620) July 15, 2009 09:22:29 UTC but it was in the fjords far enough away from any heavily populated centers that there was little concern. When I looked at the earthquake dangers for Christchurch, at that time, I observed they were not nearly so bad as where I am presently living in the Berkeley area, so I thought it would be a much safer place to live.
But not so fast, Charlie! Check today’s news again. Dunedin, a university town a little ways south looks much better on the earthquake map.
It’s amazing that an exact location of a photograph can had with what appears at first glance to be too little information. But locating this one only took a few minutes.