More than 170 tremors have hit the coastal town of Navidad, Chile in just five weeks. The strongest of the tremors, which measured at 5.9 magnitude on the Richter scale, sent panicked mourners at a funeral fleeing into the streets.
The town has a population of just 5,500, but it now holds the title as one of the shakiest spots on Earth, reports Sky News.
Seismologists are not sure if the more than 170 tremors are a precursor to a massive earthquake that may be on its way, or if they are continued aftershocks from a deadly 8.8 magnitude earthquake that took place two years ago.
Despite the multitude of tremors hitting the area, the towns residents have mostly learned to live with the constant shaking. They are, however, taking extra precautions with the Christmas season in full swing. Children at local schools have been practicing earthquake drills and some restaurant owners are even opting for canned beer, instead of glass bottles.
ABC News notes that mostly everyone in the town has an earthquake bag with flashlights and food at the ready, just in case one of the more than 170 tremors turns into a massive earthquake. Acting Mayor of Navidad, Rodrigo Soto, stated:
“We were born, grew up and were raised with earthquakes. It seems like the world for the first time has discovered Navidad. Everyone asks us if we’re scared and all we can say is that we need to be prepared.”
Despite their proven ability to prepare for earthquakes, there is no way to stamp down that panicky feeling that happens when the ground shakes. When it begins, there is no possible way to tell how long it will last — or how severe it will get. Carolina Jeria recalled the 5.9-magnitude earthquake on November 21, saying:
“People were terrorized. In a moment like that, you lose control. We’re very worried about the quakes because the big one in 2010 caught us unprepared.”
Would you be nervous living in the town that has been hit by more than 170 tremors in just five weeks?