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Being Prepared for An Earthquake

Being Prepared for An Earthquake!

If you live in an earthquake prone area you’ve probably thought about doing some planning in the event that “The Big One” hits. Well there’s no time like the present and so let’s get started!  It could mean the difference between life and death or serious injury. With just a little planning you will be more confident about the safety of you and your family in the event of an earthquake.

It has been determined that it’s not just California residents that need to be concerned.  Both geologists and seismologist have predicted that there is a very likely chance that a major earthquake may occur in Missouri, Arkansas, Tennessee or Kentucky sometime between now and 2035.  Though these incidents may not be the size of the one that hit Los Angeles in 1994 you should know that even smaller quakes can cause severe injury, cause destruction and disrupt your normal daily living.

If you haven’t ever experienced an earthquake it is definitely one of those things that you will immediately recognize.  It can take the form of a gentle rolling sensation that gradually or quickly becomes more violent.  They can create a roaring or rumbling sound that will grow louder.  Just keep in mind that you and your family can survive an earthquake simply by being prepared.  Make a plan and practice that plan.

See the USGS Earthquake Hazards Program: https://earthquake.usgs.gov/

During an earthquake many injuries and deaths are caused by collapsing structures and falling objects.  Some of these objects are cabinets, furniture, lighting fixtures or glass.  As part of your plan go to each room of your home and find the safest spot in each.  There is a good chance that your family members will not be in the same room when an earthquake strikes.  Make certain that your children recognize the safe spots of each room in your home and have them practice going to these spots.  Remember that they will be frightened when an earthquake strikes and so the more practice the better!  The more your children practice the more confidence they will have if they are alone in a room at the time of the earthquake.

Although you have confidence in the school that your children attend ask your child if they are aware of what to do in the event of an earthquake while they’re at school.

Drop down to your hands and knees to get to the safest spot in the room that your in.  Doing so will prevent the earthquake from possibly knocking you down and this position still allows you to move.  Cover your head and neck and your entire body if possible to protect you from falling objects.  To do so find a sturdy table or desk.  If this isn’t possible then get down near an interior wall or next to low-lying furniture that can’t fall on you then cover your head and neck with your arms and hands.  Be careful not to find shelter near windows and glass that can shatter and fall on or near you.  Stay covered until the shaking stops!

This initial preparation will help you and your family to get through the initial event as calmly and safely as possible.  There is much more to do to prepare for an earthquake and hopefully these first steps will help you get through the shaking!

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