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Earthquake Safety Basics

April 17, 2013 6 Comments

When the Shaking Starts

If you are indoors:

  • If in a high-rise building – Drop, Cover and Hold On. Avoid windows.
  • Do not use elevators.
  • If you are not near a desk or a table, drop to the floor next to an interior wall and protect your head and neck with your arms.
  • If in bed stay there and cover head with a pillow, get out of bed only when tremors stop and wear footwear.
  • Avoid exterior walls, windows, tall furniture, large appliances, cabinets filled with heavy items, hanging objects and mirrors.

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If you are outdoors:

  • Move to a clear area if you can do so safely; avoid buildings, power lines, trees and other hazards.
  • Move to a clear area if you can do so safely; avoid buildings, power lines, trees and other hazards.  Always assume power lines are live.
  • Near tall buildings then get away from them when shaking starts.
  • And driving then when able to safely pull over to the side of the road and stop.
  • Avoid overpasses, bridges, power lines, signs, trees and other things that might collapse or fall on the vehicle.
  • Stay inside the vehicle until the shaking ends. If a power line falls onto your vehicle, stay inside until a trained person removes the hazard.

 

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After The Earthquake

Check for Damage and Hazardous Conditions

  • Fire - If possible, put out small fires in your home or neighborhood immediately. Call for help.
  • Damaged Wiring - Shut off power at the main breaker switch if there is any damage to your home. Leave the power off until the damage is repaired.
  • Falling Items - Be aware that heavy items may fall off shelves when you open closets and cabinet doors.
  • Gas Leaks - Turn off the gas only if you suspect a broken pipe or leak. Don’t turn gas back on by yourself – wait for the gas company.
  • Damaged Walls - They may be weakened and could topple during aftershocks.

 

 If your home is damaged:

  • Do not reenter your home until you know it’s safe.
  • Be sure there are no gas leaks before using open flames or operating electrical equipment.
  • Check for faulty electrical wiring and broken water lines. Water contact with faulty wiring is a shock hazard.
  • Unplug broken or toppled light fixtures and appliances. These could start fires.
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