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It’s crucial to be earthquake ready before an earthquake strikes.

Earthquake Emergency Procedures

During an Earthquake

  • The area near the exterior walls of a building is the most dangerous place to be. Windows, facades and architectural details are often the first parts of the building to collapse. To stay away from this danger zone, stay inside if you are inside and outside if you are outside.

  • If you are indoors:
    drop for earthquake 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 for earthquake under something 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 to something during earthquake 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.

If you are not near a desk or table, drop to the floor against the interior wall and protect your head and neck with your arms. Avoid exterior walls, windows, hanging objects, mirrors, tall furniture, large appliances, and cabinets with heavy objects or glass. Do not go outside until after the shaking has stopped!

  • If you are outdoors:

Move to a clear area if you can safely do so; avoid power lines, trees, signs, buildings, vehicles, and other hazards.

After an Earthquake

  • Remain calm. Take actions as necessary to prevent injuries and further damage. Do not panic and do all that is possible to calm others.
  • Remember, aftershocks may occur at any moment with nearly the same force as the original quake. Be prepared.
  • Move cautiously and observe your surroundings for hazardous situations.
  • Check yourself and people around you for injuries.  Do not attempt to move seriously injured people unless they are in immediate danger of further injury. Provide first aid where necessary.
  • Do not use your telephone except for genuine emergency calls. Seek help by phone (if working and you have need for emergency aid), or by sending an able-bodied person. Expect a long delay if serious quake has occurred.
  • Elevators can be unpredictable and dangerous after a quake. Never use elevators until you have been assured by University personnel that they are safe.
  • Do not use any matches or candles. Open windows and leave the building immediately.
  • Stay at the assembly area designated for the building and wait for further instructions and information.
    Practice Earthquake Safety with Millions: http://www.ShakeOut.org. Starring Catherine Luensmann, Narrated by Brittany Dixon. Produced by the Southern California Earthquake Center. View the full playlist: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GSDmq...
Seven Steps to Earthquake Safety

The Earthquake Country Alliance has worked with experts in earthquake science, preparedness, and mitigation to develop this step-by-step guide for staying safe before, during, and after an earthquake.


Before the next big earthquake we recommend these four steps that will make you, your family, or your workplace better prepared to survive and recover quickly:

Step 1:
Secure your space by identifying hazards and securing moveable items.
secure your space for earthquakes
Step 2:
Plan to be safe by creating a disaster plan and deciding how you will communicate in an emergency.
secure your space for earthquakes
Step 3:
Organize disaster supplies in convenient locations.
organize earthquake disaster supplies
Step 4:
Minimize financial hardship by organizing important documents, strengthening your property, and considering insurance.
organize important documents emergency
Survive And Recover

During the next big earthquake, and immediately after, is when your level of preparedness will make a difference in how you and others survive and can respond to emergencies:

Step 5:
Drop, Cover, and Hold On when the earth shakes.
drop,cover,hold on earthquake procedure
Step 6:
Improve safety after earthquakes by evacuating if necessary, helping the injured, and preventing further injuries or damage.
improve safety after earthquake

 After the immediate threat of the earthquake has passed, your level of preparedness will determine your quality of life in the weeks and months that follow:

Step 7:
Reconnect and Restore
Restore daily life by reconnecting with others, repairing damage, and rebuilding community.
reconnect and restore life after earthquake







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 Last Modified 6/14/21