Earthquakes are a reality almost everywhere in the world. Especially along the Pacific Rim. However, did you know ever state in the United States has earthquakes? The two states that have the fewest are Florida and North Dakota.
We never know when a devastating earthquake might hit. The science has not yet produced an accurate reliable warning system. However, having an earthquake kit ready to go is something you can do right now, just in case of an earthquake or any other type of disaster. A good earthquake kit may save your life.
Soon many parents throughout the US will be sending their child off to school. Would they be prepared should an earthquake occur? You can take simple steps to ready your child. A disaster plan for you and your family is essential, but just as important is a plan for those in the family who are away at school.
Ways to Prepare
Keep shoes, clothes and a working flashlight next to each person's bed just in case an earthquake occurs at night.
Identify safe spots in dorm and school such as under sturdy desks and tables, where your child can take safe harbor when an earthquake takes place.
Establish an out-of-area contact person who can be called by everyone in the household to relay information.
Provide all family members with a list of important contact phone numbers.
Your child should have copies of essential documents in a secure location.
Have a disaster drill to practice your child's plan; Discuss your disaster plan and essential information with your family members; It is important to include every family member in your plans; If your child is away from home, they will know what to expect if the disaster occurs where they are located or at home where you spend time.
Buy an earthquake kit for each child away at school living in a dorm or even the little ones who go to school down the street. You too should have a kit at home, at work and one in your car.
What to do during an earthquake
Drop Cover & Hold
At the first sign of an earthquake, Drop, Cover and Hold.
The majority of injuries from an earthquake are caused by flying debris. The best way to protect yourself is to DROP, COVER and HOLD.
When the shaking begins drop under a sturdy desk, table or piece of furniture. Hold onto the legs of the furniture and hold this position while counting to 60. This will provide coverage to protect you from flying and falling debris.
If you are in a HIGH-RISE BUILDING and not near a desk or table, move against an interior wall, and protect your head with your arms. Face away from the windows. Do not use elevators.
If you are OUTDOORS, move to a clear area away from trees, signs, buildings or downed electrical wires and poles.
If you are on a PAVEMENT NEAR BUILDINGS, get into a building's doorway to protect yourself from falling bricks, glass, plaster, and other debris.
If you are DRIVING, slowly pull over to the side of the road and stop. Avoid overpasses, power lines, and other hazards. Stay inside the vehicle until the shaking is over.
If you are in a SHOP OR OTHER PUBLIC PLACE, do not rush for exits. Move away from display shelves with objects that could fall on you.
If you are in a WHEELCHAIR, move to cover, if possible, lock your wheels and protect your head with your arms.
If you are in the KITCHEN, move away from the refrigerator, stove and overhead cupboards. (Take time now to anchor appliances and install security latches on cupboard doors to reduce hazards.)
After an earthquake, be prepared for aftershocks. Plan where you will take cover when these occur.
Providing your children with a good reliable earthquake kit and a plan that contains all the important information they would need should an earthquake occur will help you sleep better at night while they are away at school.