A group of engineering seismology and earthquake engineering researcher (eSEER) from the Faculty of Civil Engineering, Universiti Teknologi Malaysia (UTM) here, has developed an earthquake detector that is installed on buildings.

The device, called Wireless Accelerometer and developed by a group of researchers led by Ts Dr Mohd Nur Asmawisham Alel, aims to detect the presence of an earthquake phenomenon and then gives a warning siren to alert the occupants of the building to get out and save themselves.

"The device is installed on the building structure to detect the presence of earthquakes. It is developed to send messages to relevant agencies such as the Malaysian Civil Defense Force (APM), the Royal Malaysia Police (PDRM), the Malaysian Armed Forces (ATM) and the Malaysian Fire and Rescue Department (JBPM).

"This is to enable the agencies concerned to mobilise their respective forces to the location of the incident. This is to avoid wastage of time and resources such as the search rescue team having to carry out their operation all over the place without knowing where the actual cause of the earthquake is," said UTM in a statement today.

The device was developed over a period of 30 months from the beginning of November 2019 to the end of April last year.

According to the university, the device is developed using solar energy as the main energy to replace batteries and also conventional electricity that was cut off when the earthquake occurred, so that it can continue to function by sending data to the relevant agencies for rescue work and data analysis.

It said that although Malaysia is outside the Pacific Ring of Fire, it should always be vigilant and prepared for earthquakes that are seen to occur very often in neighboring countries such as Indonesia and the Philippines.

"From 2007 to 2015, the Malaysian Meteorological Department (MetMalaysia) recorded a total of 31 low-magnitude tremors in our country,” it said.

Quoting the United States Geological Survey report, it said, more than 65 earthquakes had been recorded in Sabah since 1900, while more than 20 earthquakes were been detected in Sarawak since 1970.

In fact, Malaysia also experienced a six-magnitude earthquake in 2015 in Ranau, Sabah, which killed 18 people, it added.

Source: BERNAMA News Agency