Polder 32 is one of the many inland islands in Bangladesh that was enclosed by an embankment to protect it from flooding. When that embankment failed during Cyclone Aila in 2009, the island was flooded for almost 2 years. Subsidence of the ground inside the embankment with no sedimentation to compensate made it worse. We are installing a GPS at a school there to monitor the subsidence.
Leaving Dhaka, we spend an entire day getting to Khepupara in southern Bangladesh. Then we spent a long morning installing a GPS to monitor subsidence of the delta before heading back on the road again.
I’ve just arrived back in Bangladesh with an engineer to install 6 new GPS stations to add to our studies of earthquake hazards and land subsidence. Our first stop was Comilla University, the westernmost exposed fold of the collision between the Ganges-Bramaputra Delta and the Sumatra-Andaman-Burma plat boundary.
After finally reaching the Mongla and our boat, we settled into our new home. It is a similar design, but much larger than the one we used in September. As we ate dinner and explored the ship, it started the overnight journey to the southeastern part of the Sundarbans where the wildlife is most plentiful. [...]
We spent a day on the islands (chars) in the Brahmaputra River seeing the geology and talking to the residents. Then after an evening of feasting and dancing in our new Saris and lungis, we hit the road for the trip to the Sundarbans.
To help my students in a class on hazards of Bangladesh better understand the country, I am taking them there to experience Bangladesh for themselves.
As we finally reached our prime target area, it was time for me to leave the ship and return home. Despite initial struggles on navigating the Brahmaputra River, we have worked together with the ship’s crew and pilots for a successful method. And now as I leave with many new friends, the best data is coming in.
Rejoining the ship, we sailed up the Padma and Jamuna (Brahmaputra) Rivers. Hurrying to our primary area with the help of pilots, we finally collected good seismic data.
Finishing up in the muddy rivers of NE Bangladesh, we headed downstream to switch to the mighty Brahmaputra River system. However, on the way down I had to jump ship to go into traffic-clogged Dhaka for some meetings before rejoining her on the Padma, the name of the combined Ganges and Brahmaputra Rivers.
From our return to Jamalganj, we headed east searching for a river to carry us up to the Indian border across the Dauki Fault. Along the way, we celebrated Steve Goodbred’s birthday. However, even the biggest of the rivers proved too shallow for our boat. We switched to the