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Get Ready for the Next Earthquake

Post Date:07/12/2019 3:00 PM
Earthquakes are a natural, sudden, and violent shaking of the Earth's surface. They are caused by the shifting of underground rock. Earthquakes can cause buildings to collapse and heavy items to fall, resulting in injuries and property damage.

Here's how you can prepare your home and family for the next earthquake:
  • Secure items such as televisions and objects that hang on walls. Store heavy and breakable objects on low shelves.
  • Practice DROP, COVER, THEN HOLD ON with family and coworkers.
  • Create a family emergency communications plan. Plan where to meet if you get separated.
  • Make an emergency kit that includes enough food and water for at least three days, a flashlight, a fire extinguisher, and a whistle. Consider your family's specific needs, including medications. Do not forget the needs of your pets.
  • Consider a retrofit of your building to correct structural issues that make it vulnerable to collapse during an earthquake.
If an earthquake happens, protect yourself right away:
  • Drop, cover, then hold on! Drop to your hands and knees. Cover your head and neck with your arms. Hold on to any sturdy furniture until the shaking stops. Crawl only if you can reach better cover safely.
  • If in bed, stay there and cover your head and neck with a pillow.
  • If inside, stay there until shaking stops. Do not run outside.
  • If in a vehicle, stop in a clear area that is away from buildings, trees, overpasses, or utility wires.
  • If you're in a high-rise building, expect fire alarms and sprinklers to activate. Do not use elevators.
  • If near slopes, cliffs, or mountains, be alert for falling rocks and landslides.
  • Be aware of the tsunami warning systems in your area.
Be safe after an earthquake:
  • Expect aftershocks to follow the largest shock of an earthquake.
  • Check yourself for injury and aid others if you have training.
  • If in a damaged building, go outside and quickly move away from the building.
  • Do not enter damaged buildings.
  • If you are trapped, cover your mouth. Send a text, bang on a pipe or wall, or use a whistle instead of shouting so that rescuers can locate you.
  • If you are in an area that may experience tsunamis, go inland or to higher ground immediately after the shaking stops.
  • Save phone calls for emergencies.
  • Once safe, monitor local news reports via battery-operated radio, TV, social media, and cell phone text alerts for emergency information and instructions.
Any questions about disaster preparedness in Sausalito may be directed to Lieutenant Bill Fraass at (415) 289-4171 or

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