According to the U.S. Geological Survey, there have been 5 major earthquakes worldwide so far in 2010:
  • 1/12/10, Haiti, 7.0 magnitude
  • 2/4/10, Offshore Northern California, 5.9 magnitude
  • 2/18/10, China-Russia-N. Korea border, 6.9 magnitude
  • 2/26/10, Ryukyu Islands Japan, 7.0 magnitude
  • 2/27/10, Offshore Chile, 8.8 magnitude
Earthquakes can be very dangerous and can occur at any time of the year. Identifying potential hazards ahead of time and advance planning can reduce the chances of death, serious injury, or property damage.

According to the Earthquake Country Alliance based in Southern California, there are 7 major steps to take for earthquake safety:
  1. Secure it now! Conduct a "hazard hunt" to help identify and fix things such as unsecured televisions, computers, bookcases, furniture, unstrapped water heaters, etc. Securing these items now will help to protect you tomorrow.
  2. Make a plan. Planning for an earthquake is not much different from planning for a party or vacation. Make sure that your emergency plan includes evacuation and reunion plans; your out-of-state contact person's name and number; the location of your emergency supplies and other pertinent information.
  3. Make disaster kits. Everyone should have a disaster supply kit stored in accessible locations at home, at work and in your vehicle. Having emergency supplies readily available can reduce the impact of an earthquake. Your disaster supplies kits should include food, water, flashlights, portable radios, batteries, a first aid kit, cash, extra medications, a whistle, fire extinguisher, etc.
  4. Is your place safe? Most houses are not as safe as they could be. Whether you are a homeowner or a renter, there are things that you can do to improve the structural integrity of your home. Some of the things that you might consider checking include inadequate foundations, unbraced cripple walls (a short wall built upon the foundation of a house that produces a high crawlspace), soft first stories (click here for details), unreinforced masonry and vulnerable pipes. Consult a contractor or engineer to help you identify your building's weaknesses and begin to fix them now.
  5. Drop, cover, and hold on! Learn what to do during an earthquake, whether you're at home, at work, at school or just out and about. Taking the proper actions, such as "Drop, Cover, and Hold On", can save lives and reduce your risk of death or injury. During earthquakes, drop to the floor, take cover under a sturdy desk or table, and hold on to it firmly. Be prepared to move with it until the shaking stops.
  6. Check it out. One of the first things you should do following a major disaster is to check for injuries and damages that need immediate attention. Make sure you are trained in first aid and in damage assessment techniques. You should be able to administer first aid and to identify hazards such as damaged gas, water, sewage and electrical lines.
  7. Communicate and recover. Following a major disaster, communication will be an important step in your recovery efforts. Turn on your portable radio for information and safety advisories. For most Presidential declared disasters, resources will also be available from federal, state, and local government agencies.
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Another great resource for earthquake safety and preparedness is the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA). This is a very comprehensive site concerning disaster preparedness. You can also Replace additional information at the U.S. Geological Survey website.

Keep in mind that the best way to survive an earthquake is to be prepared for it. You can have greater confidence in being safe by knowing that you have made preparations for natural disasters that may come your way.

During recent years, cell phones have become a daily necessity. Portability and convenience are top priority and smart phones have come to replace phone books, computers and maps in our on-the-go lifestyle.

What did we ever do without them? Well, we had conventional landline phones that stayed inside our homes. But the value of landlines has been called into question as cell phone popularity climbs.

Many families have been dropping their landline telephones in favor of a family cell phone plan. "The landline is too expensive" and "everyone in the family has their own number anyway" are common reasons for getting rid of the landline. So if everyone has a cell phone, we can all be in touch in emergencies, right? Wrong!

Your cell phone is only as useful as its power - both in its battery and service through your carrier. Natural disasters have shown us time after time that cell phone towers are not invincible. Hurricanes, tornadoes, wildfires, and floods can damage and even destroy them, making cell phones completely useless. Also, in the United States, there is no requirement for cell phone companies to have systems to keep them online (including the towers) when the electricity goes out. Although some towers may have limited backup power ability, they are not required to do so.

Cell phone towers can also get crowded and deny others the ability to make calls, which would likely happen in an emergency. Landlines, however, can be used in the same situations and they work fine.

Power outages can last anywhere from a few minutes to a few weeks. If you have a landline, always have a least one corded phone that will work when the power is out. In these conditions, you will most likely be unable to charge a cell phone; so your smart phone will last as long as its battery, assuming that its tower is even functional. Of course, if you have the Wavelength™ or the Charger™, you can charge your phone when the power is out. But remember that many of the cell towers may be incapacitated.

Cell phones are great tools for calling for help if your car breaks down or sending texts to announce the new baby. But for natural disasters, it's best to have a landline phone. They are much more reliable in extreme situations and do not need to be charged. Plus, the service costs less per month than a night out to dinner and a movie!
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8 comments

m11.in

m11.in

Thanks for writing this blog. it's great blog.
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Tish Treadaway

Tish Treadaway

Thank you for the earthquake preparedness information and products. I have been busy working on my plan, getting water, food, a go bag….

davids8890

davids8890

Excellent information.. You can never be too prepared.

David

David

I just ran across this expose.
http://www.earthquakecountry.info/dropcoverholdon/Petal_on_Copp.pdf
amazing how far information, good or bad, is disseminated across web. have to be selective.

Anonymous

Anonymous

"Earthquake Prep", to the anonymous from March 5, 6:42 pm: I just spent two hours in a CERT class with Dr. Les Youd (retired Civil Engineering Prof from BYU). He has spent his professional life studying earthquakes and catagorically said that getting near something (like a desk or table) is not the preferred method of surviving an earthquake. Yes, there are a couple of scenarios where being next to something is best, but the majority of the time victims are injured by falling debris and not being flattend by the floor above. So, the old adage of getting underneath a sturdy object is still the best and correct method.

Anonymous

Anonymous

Anonymous,

The information your referring too is called the "triangle of life" and that method hasn't taken into account United States building codes. The experiment that is being discussed also was pancaked do to demolition rather than shaking simulating an earthquake.

You can find out more about some of that controversial information at:

http://www.snopes.com/inboxer/household/triangle.asp

Tammie

Tammie

Thanks for the info. I'm pretty good with having a years supply etc. But when it comes to being prepared for an Earthquake or things like that I could use some help. Thanks again, Tammie from www.simplehealthytasty.blogspot.com

I thought some readers might be interested in this article.

http://www.ldsmag.com/churchupdate/100303chile.html

If you are prepared there is no need to fear.

Anonymous

Anonymous

I have recently read – and it sure makes sense – that the OLD #5 Drop, cover, and hold on! May not be the correct way to stay alive in an earthquake. The author stated that it is better to Drop (yes)Get NEAR cover; and curl in a fetal position. If you go next to a couch when the cealing falls the couch will actually hold up part of the cealing and a pocket next to the couch will save you. In a car – those in California who stayed in the car when the earthquake in Oakland collapsed the two cement sections of freeway – those in the cars mostly died. The rescue people were able to climb inbetween the cars that were smashed from the concrete and save a few – those who could have gotten out of the car on time and in between would have been saved. In a home -cover under a table -it will be crushed – but between two tables would be a small space…

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