Today, we’re going to help you know how to survive earthquakes, at least in the most idyllic sense. These events are shakings felt off the Earth’s surface as a result of seismic waves made from a sudden release of energy in the Earth’s crust and are responsible for over 10,000 deaths each year.
They level small and huge cities alike to dust and cause damages that strike quick but wear off slowly.
Your safety will rely on your preparedness, course of action during said disaster and how you caution yourself just right after. The shaking doesn’t do the killing per say, but rather the domino effect it has on the things around us that does.
What to do to survive earthquakes?
This ought to be your action plan
Preparation (Before the Earthquake)
- Remove any potential earthquake hazards in the home and workplace. (unsecured appliances and objects)
- Have supplies of food and water, a flashlight, a first-aid kit and a battery-operated radio. (things to be set aside for emergencies)
- One or more family members should know basic first-aid.
- Everybody in the household should know what to do to avoid injury and panic. They should also know how to turn off utilities for electricity, water and gas.
- It helps to plan/know escape routes ahead of time for buildings/structures where you mostly go to or are at (household, workplace).
Vigilance (During the Earthquake)
- The most important thing to do during an earthquake is to remain calm or not panic.
- Thinking things through when you’re about to do anything.
- If you are inside, stay put. Stand in a doorway or crouch under a desk or table, away from windows, hanging objects or glass fixtures.
- If you are outside, stay put. Stay away from things like light posts, buildings, trees and telephone and electric wires, which could be toppled down by the quake and injure you.
- If you are in an automobile or vehicle, drive away from underpasses/overpasses, and stop at the safest place possible (away from infrastructure, electrical wires and trees) and stay there.
Caution (After the Earthquake)
- After the earthquake, check for any injuries concerning your family and those in the surrounding areas.
- Evacuate the building you are in as soon as the shaking stops
- Check for safety-hazards – gas, water sewage breaks; downed power lines and signs of electrical short-circuits; damaged and weakened buildings and foundations; fires and fire hazards.
- Turn off appropriate utilities (electricity, water and gas).
- Try to avoid using the telephone if isn’t that much needed.
- Be sure to wear shoes and protective clothing, such as, hard hats and gloves, to avoid injuries while clearing debris.
- Keep battery-operated radios and listen for any emergency broadcasts.
- If electrical power is off for any length of time use the food in your refrigerator and freezer before they spoil and rot. Canned and dry foods should be saved last.
- Cooperate with all public safety and relief organizations.
- Be prepared for aftershocks.
For more information and specific tips to survive Earthquakes, be sure to also read our “Earthquake Safety Tips”.