After so many images of the devastation in Haiti, it may be hard to differentiate what just happened in Chile. Chile, after all, is far wealthier than Haiti, has a functioning government, and has suffered enough major quakes in its past to have a building code in place. The damage from an 8.8 will be massive but it could have been far worse without Chile national program of disaster preparedness.
Operation USA, 1-800-678-7255, or text 50555 "rebuild", is ready to assist those in need in Chile. Operation USA worked in Chile 25 years ago after a huge quake struck north of where last night's quake hit. The NGO is reaching out to partner agencies in a collaborative effort to better coordinate its efforts.
Hopefully, the public is not suffering from "compassion fatigue" after 6 weeks of 24/7 saturation coverage of Haiti and can both respond to relief agency appeals for money and creatively use this opportunity to discuss their own preparedness needs here in the US.
Follow Richard Walden on Twitter: www.twitter.com/Rwalden63