Ways to Prepare for an Earthquake

Check for hazards in the home:
  • Fasten shelves securely to walls.
  • Place large or heavy objects on lower shelves.
  • Store breakable items such as bottled foods, glass, and china in low, closed cabinets with latches.
  • Hang heavy items such as pictures and mirrors away from beds, couches and anywhere people sit.
  • Brace overhead light fixtures.
  • Repair defective electrical wiring and leaky gas connections. These are potential fire risks.
  • Secure a water heater by strapping it to the wall studs and bolting it to the floor.
  • Repair any deep cracks in ceilings or foundations. Get expert advice if there are signs of structural defects.
  • Store weed killers, pesticides and flammable products securely in closed cabinets with latches and on bottom shelves.
Identify safe places in each room:
  • Under sturdy furniture such as a heavy desk or table
  • Against an inside wall
  • Away from where glass could shatter – around windows, mirrors, pictures or where bookcases or other heavy furniture could fall over
Locate safe places outdoors

In the open, away from buildings, trees, telephone and electrical lines, overpasses, or elevated expressways.

Teach all family members

Make sure all family members know how to respond after an earthquake. Teach all family members how an when to turn off gas, electricity and water. Teach children how and when to call 9-1-1 and which radio station to tune to for emergency information.

Have disaster supplies on hand, including:
  • Flashlight and extra batteries
  • Portable, battery-operated radio an extra batteries
  • First aid kit and manual
  • Emergency food and water
  • Nonelectric can opener
  • Essential medicines
  • Cash and credit cards
  • Sturdy shoes
  • Also see the complete Emergency Supplies Kit information
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