By taking certain preparedness measures, the impact of an earthquake can
definitely be lessened. Most casualties result from partial building collapse, and falling
objects and debris (like toppling chimneys, falling bricks, ceiling plaster and light
fixtures). Most of these are preventable.
What can I do today?
- Be prepared to be on your own for 72 hours after a major earthquake. Make sure you have a Disaster Supply Kit.
- Teach your family members to turn off electricity, gas, and water at the main switch valves as soon as a large earthquake starts. This can prevent gas and water leaks and electrical fires.
- Conduct a Hazard Hunt. Look for possible hazards like hanging plants, hot water heaters that can be pulled away from pipes and rupture, heavy objects stored overhead, and flammable liquids that would be safer in a detached shed.
- Establish Safe Spots. Each family member should know safe spots in each room.
- Drop, Cover and Hold. During a earthquake Drop under something, make sure your head and body are covered, and hold on to a substantial structure. A good example of what to Drop, cover and hold under is a dining room table.
Earthshaking Earthquake Links:
- Understanding Earthquake Magnitude, Power and Energy Release – “Perspective”:
- Alaska Seismic Hazards Safety Commission
- Earthquake Mitigation Project Handbook
- American Red Cross: Earthquakes
- Seismic Retrofit Training Materials
- National Earthquake Information Center
- Alaska Earthquake Center
- Seismology Resources for Teachers
- Small Business Preparedness for Earthquakes
- FEMA Earthquake Resource Catalog
If you have questions about mitigation, e-mail Alaska's Hazard Mitigation Officer, Ann Gravier.