An Irresponsible Prank

On the 1st of December of 2013 a couple of hours before midnight, hundreds of people or a thousand even from the coastal villages of Roxas City (Philippines) and on some other coastal municipalities left their homes in fear of an impending tsunami. (Read http://reflectionsby.me.pn/2013/12/tsunami-scare/)

It turned out that the fear of a tsunami hitting the coastal areas of Roxas City and the rest of Capiz (and some parts of Panay Island) came from a text message of an unknown origin as of this time. The said message was rather an elaborate hoax!

Where did the sender of the message got the idea of a tsunami hitting the island of Panay? Did that person, out of fear, recklessly sent the message- without confirming- to warn others? or was it a very irresponsible prank?

Our area had just been recently hit by the super typhoon Yolanda (Haiyan) and the people are barely recovering from that catastrophe, and people can still feel the wrath of nature in their hearts. Thus sending such a message can easily trigger their fear.

In a matter of hours, thousands of people left their homes and went to higher places or just to go far away from the shore lines. Some, I’ve heard went to high mountains. Only to find out, hours later, that the text message was a mere false alarm or a very insensitive and irresponsible prank.

The result of that message however created more trouble than just needlessly sending people scurrying away from their homes. A fire broke lose because the resident left a burning candle unattended while they investigate the exodus of people that they see. I’ve heard one or two persons died of heart attack because of fear, and some of the abandoned house looted.

To the person who sent that message, I say this to you. Next time, don’t be an irresponsible prick, if you’ve heard such stories again, verify first if it’s true before you send a message that would scare people. If you are a prankster, then you’re the most insensitive, heartless S.O.B. that sent such a very unfunny joke on a time and to people who had just survived a catastrophic event.

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