Stay Safe and Calm: What to Do When an Earthquake Strikes
Earthquakes can be scary and unpredictable natural disasters. While nobody plans for an earthquake, it’s important to know what actions you can take to stay safe and prevent injuries. Here’s what you should do:
Drop, Cover, and Hold On
The first thing you should do when an earthquake hits is to stay calm and take cover. One of the best ways to protect yourself is to take cover under a sturdy piece of furniture, such as a desk or table. If you can’t find any furniture to take cover under, drop down to the ground and cover your head and neck with your arms. If you’re in bed, stay there and cover your head with a pillow.
Evacuate if Needed
If you feel unsafe in the building you’re in, leave immediately. Follow the evacuation procedures set by the local authorities or your building’s management. Be cautious of broken glass or any other hazardous materials while you are evacuating. Don’t use the elevator; use the stairs instead.
Check for Injuries and Hazards
After an earthquake, check yourself and others for injuries. If someone needs medical attention, call for help. Also, check the interior and exterior of the building for hazards, including damages on walls or cracks on the ground that could cause further damage. Be prepared to turn off utilities, such as gas or water, if advised to do so by the authorities.
Stay Informed and Prepared
Monitoring and staying tuned for news reports and official updates are crucial after an earthquake. Be prepared for aftershocks that could possibly occur, ensuring all furniture, mirrors, TVs, and other objects that may accidentally fly or cause further injury during tremors are secured with straps, Velcro, or adhesive tape . Create an earthquake preparedness kit handy in a clear and accessible location in case you need it; items includes first aid kit, bottled waters, stored foods, emergency radio, flashlight, and prescribed medications. Also have an emergency plan with your loved ones; these could include the identification of meeting places, contact points, nearby support skills to maintain safety like learning to turn off valves or changing fuses.
Hopefully, you will never have to face an earthquake in your life, but it’s important that you are well informed in the event that one occurs. Remember, staying calm and safety prepared are key to escaping safely from such a crisis.