Would you know how to protect yourself and your family if an earthquake shook the state? Or would you panic due to a lack of preparedness? If you are not familiar with the steps to take during an earthquake, now is the time to get informed and be ready.
Remember “stop, drop and roll” – the steps you take should your clothes or body catch on fire? It’s likely that those three steps stuck with you from the time you learned them in childhood.
Earthquake safety requires a similar three step message:
- DROP to the ground (before the earthquake drops you
- Take COVER by getting under a sturdy table or desk, and
- HOLD ON to it until the shaking stops.
While disasters understandably spur a “freak out” response in us, these three steps can alleviate the panic response. Do not run to another room to get under another table, stand in a doorway or go outside. If a table is not available, drop to the ground, get to a corner and cover your head and neck with your hands and arms.
Many Georgians do not believe our state is prone to this type of natural disaster, but we actually are. Georgia has a history of earthquake hazards that dates back to 1811. Our most severe earthquake took place in 1886, reaching 7.3 on the Richter scale. As recently as August 5, 2010, Georgia experienced a magnitude 2.2 earthquake less than 75 miles outside of Atlanta, Covington and Macon and only 10 miles from Milledgeville at Lake Sinclair.
Preparedness determines how quickly we respond, and the best way to arm yourself and your family is through practice. A great place to start is to sign up to participate in The Great Central U.S. Shakeout. On April 28, 2011, at 10:15 a.m. wherever you are – at home, at work, at school, anywhere – you should “Drop, Cover and Hold On” for at least 60 seconds as if an earthquake is taking place.
The Great Central U.S. Shakeout will be the largest earthquake drill to ever take place in Georgia and help you learn how to protect yourself when an earthquake happens. Currently, more than 1.8 million people in the Central U.S. region, more than 118,000 of them from Georgia, have registered to participate. It is not too late for you to register, so do so today. This short commitment can be life-saving.
Natural disasters can strike at any time, and by then, it’s too late to prepare. So get Ready today. There are many ways for you to participate in the The Great Central U.S. ShakeOut, and share what you’re doing with others so they can do the same. Join us!