On Earthquake Safety

A conversation on twitter today turned to earthquakes and earthquake safety. It’s a bit much of a topic to fit into tweets, so I thought I’d write a blog post about it.

1. The first rule of earthquake safety is you do not talk about earthquake safety run outside.

2. The second rule of earthquake safety is you DO NOT TALK ABOUT EARTHQUAKE SAFETY RUN OUTSIDE. Seriously. The type of motion in an earthquake is most likely to throw the roof off the building. Inside tends to be safer than the distance you would get running. Speaking of which…

3. Don’t run around. The ground is moving! It’s going to mess with your balance, just a bit. I’m told the best thing is to drop to your knees and…

4. Crawl under a table or desk or something of the sort. Your biggest risk is actually getting hit by objects falling from shelves.

5. Curl up like an armadillo, hold on to a leg of your cover with one hand, protect your neck with the other.

6. When it’s over, feel free to (carefully) go outside. Don’t drink tap water, turn off your gas, etc.

7. Turn on the news. They’ll probably be giving you good emergency info.


A few other notes:

If in an adobe building, cowering in a doorway is a good idea, that’s the strong point of the architecture. If not in an adobe building, stay out of the doorways, those are the weak parts of the architecture!

If you’ve read about the ‘triangle of life’, ignore it completely. The self-titled expert behind that doesn’t know what he’s talking about.

If you’re currently in a country without building codes (or that doesn’t adhere to them), it may be a good idea to ignore rules one and two. Those are predicated on a bit of standards in construction.




Red Cross Safety Sheet

Emergency Survival Program Safety Sheet

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