Temblor causes massive damage
Earthquake kills 63, injures 3,757 others
Published: Thursday, October 15, 2009
Updated: Thursday, October 15, 2009 05:10
According to Hughes, people were trapped under the remains from the collapsed freeway. While several were dead, others remained buried alive.
"(It was) a hectic rescue going on in Oakland," Hughes said. "Everyone was there. There were huge 18-wheel media trucks and helicopters with tractors hanging from them.
"Supernatural things were at play," he said. "It was beyond anybody's comprehension."
Hughes was on the Comet Stadium football field at the time the earthquake hit, interviewing a coach he was writing a feature story on when he saw the bleachers ripple.
He said that at the time, The Advocate published its paper on Friday mornings, making Wednesday evening the scheduled deadline. The Advocate staff wanted to publish an issue about the Loma Prieta earthquake.
The Contra Costa College campus was closed and the power was off, however, which meant they would have no access to their newsroom.
"We snuck computers into my living room and created a small newsroom and worked through Wednesday night," Hughes said. "There were around seven to nine people working. Everyone took a city to cover."
The Advocate was the only community college paper to publish a timely newspaper about the Loma Prieta earthquake, Hughes said.
"We continued our publishing schedule uninterrupted," he said. "What was challenging was to get the paper out because there was so much news and information available. The challenge was to figure out what to include in our stories as far as what was relevant to the college and the surrounding community."
The Loma Prieta earthquake was strong enough to create damage, but a lot depended on the nature of the architecture, Hughes said.
"(CCC) was surprisingly unaffected," he said. "Let's just hope the next big one isn't on the Hayward Fault."
Contact Diana Reyes at firstname.lastname@example.org