RTE reporter Michael Breen has spent the past few days with an earthquake researcher, searching for clues to why the colour of his cake is changing.
“This is a real-time science experiment, and we’re really looking for what’s happening at the moment,” he said.
“We’ve got a number of different sensors we’re using that can measure things like air pressure, the strength of the earth shaking and the amount of energy released.”
While most of the world’s earthquakes are triggered by large earthquakes, the South Pacific and northern Australia are particularly prone to earthquakes.
“I think the thing that we’re seeing is people who live in the southern hemisphere really haven’t had the most good experiences,” Dr Breen said.
“We’re really finding that people in the northern hemisphere tend to live in a state of denial about earthquakes, and it’s really hard to come to terms with that.”
The first real-world test of Dr Bree’s findings came in August last year when a 7.1 magnitude quake hit near his home town of Mecklenburg-Vorpommern in South Africa.
The area was evacuated and Dr Brees had to move his family to a safer location.
“It was really scary,” he recalled.
“But it wasn’t until we got back to our house and started to get our families settled in that it started to go away.”
Then the temperature started to drop a little bit, so I got a lot of relief from that.
“After that, Dr Brenn said his cake turned red.”
The temperature started getting cooler and cooler, and I just couldn’t get my cake out of the oven.
“That was pretty much the last straw for me.”‘
We can’t have an earthquake with the weather’Dr Bree said he had no intention of making a cake out to celebrate a strong earthquake.
“No cake for a very strong earthquake is going to happen,” he explained.
“Even if it does happen, it’s going to be very hot, and people won’t be able to get their homes back up.”
Dr Brees said he was aware of the risks associated with an active earthquake, but it was just the nature of the activity.
“If there’s a massive quake, people will go into action,” he told RTE.
“They’ll go out into the streets, and they’ll be on top of buildings and people will be on the roofs.”
“And we don’t want to see that happen.”
For those who are concerned, they’ll just take the cake out and move on.
“He said he hoped the results would help him and other people to understand what is happening in their own communities.”
What we’re trying to do is educate people about what we’re dealing with in terms of earthquakes and the risks, and the warning signs that we should be keeping a lookout for,” he added.”
People can learn about it from a scientific perspective, and then they can take that information and make a decision on whether or not they want to be in the same situation.
“Dr Cunneen has already shared the results with the public, and said he has been inundated with messages from people who have been affected by the quake.”
There’s been quite a lot,” he laughed.”
And it’s all been very positive, but the number one message that we’ve been getting is that there’s no way to make cake out there that’s red.