Recent tragedies a reminder to practice earthquake preparedness

practice earthquake preparedness

After major earthquake tragedies struck Mexico twice just days apart, and yesterday’s 4.5 magnitude wake-up call in Vancouver, it seems there’s no better time for a good ShakeOut.

The Great ShakeOut Earthquake Drills happen next week across many U.S. states and territories as well as in British Columbia, Yukon and Quebec in Canada and in other earthquake-prone countries such as Japan. On October 19 at 10:19 a.m., over 18 million registered participants will take place in the drills worldwide.

Drill guidelines are available for families, business, schools, care facilities, agricultural and faith-based organizations. The drills focus on a three-step procedure of drop, cover and hold-on. Here are ShakeOut’s steps to reduce chance of injury:

Drop where you are, onto your hands and knees. This position protects you from being knocked down and also allows you to stay low and crawl to shelter if nearby.

Cover your head and neck with one arm and hand.

  • If a sturdy table or desk is nearby, crawl underneath it for shelter.
  • If no shelter is nearby, crawl next to an interior wall (away from windows).
  • Stay on your knees; bend over to protect vital organs.

Hold on until shaking stops.

  • Under shelter: hold on to it with one hand; be ready to move with your shelter if it shifts.
  • No shelter: hold on to your head and neck with both arms and hands.

At your business, if you’re near a sturdy desk or table, see the video below:

Let’s not forget that earthquakes can happen anytime, no matter where you are, and many areas like San Francisco and Vancouver are said to be overdue for a major occurrence. This reality has placed even more challenges on the real estate industry, its owners, and property management companies to escalate planning requirements for the safety of their tenants and occupants. WPS develops building multi-hazard emergency and disaster plans based on a nationally recognized planning standard known as ICS, or Incident Command System. ICS is a very scalable system, meaning you can execute this plan even if you only have one building staff member available. Contact us today to get started.