Did you know that forty-five states and territories in the United States are at moderate to very high risk of earthquakes?
Earthquakes often strike with very little warning. Use these earthquake preparedness safety tips to be ready in the event of these natural disasters:
before an earthquake
- Keep a stocked emergency supplies kit in an easy-to-access location.
- Know the earthquake safety plans for all of the buildings you occupy regularly.
- Choose safe places to shelter in each room of your home, workplace and/or school. A safe place could be under a piece of furniture or against an interior wall - away from windows, bookcases, or tall furniture that could topple over.
- Practice “drop, cover and hold on” in each safe place. If there is no sturdy furniture available to hold on to, sit on the floor next to an interior wall, covering your head and neck with your arms.
- Before an earthquake occurs, secure any items that could fall, such as bookshelves, mirrors, and light fixtures.
- Stay where you are until the shaking stops. Do not run outside. Do not seek shelter in a doorway; this does not provide protection from falling or flying objects, and you may not be able to remain standing.
- Drop to the ground on your hands and knees so the earthquake doesn’t knock you down.
- Cover your head and neck with your arms to protect yourself from falling debris.
- If you are in danger from falling objects and can move safely, crawl for additional cover under a sturdy desk or table.
- If no sturdy furniture is available and the path is clear, an interior wall or corner may also provide some additional cover.
- Stay away from glass, windows, outside doors, and walls, as well as anything that could fall such as light fixtures or bookshelves.
- Hold on to any sturdy covering for support so you can move with it until the shaking stops. This can also help protect you from falling objects that may cause injury. Stay where you are until the shaking stops.
- Once the shaking stops, look around. If you see a clear path to safety, go to an open space away from damaged areas.
- If you are trapped, do not move around or kick up dust.
- Use a cell phone to call or text for help.
- Tap on a pipe or wall or use a whistle, if you have one, so that rescuers can locate you.
- Be prepared to “drop, cover, and hold on” during potential aftershocks.