Thursday, December 2, 2021

After California ShakeOut, get ready for a real earthquake. Here’s how

Today in California, people heard sirens and received alerts on their cell phones for earthquakes. But the Great One did not come to disrupt our life and destroy our infrastructure. It was the Great California Shake-up, the annual earthquake preparedness test for the state, and a reminder to Californians to be prepared for a major disaster.

If these sirens and warnings got you thinking about how to make sure you, your family, and your area are doing well in the event of a true earthquake, The Times and other organizations have tons of resources to help. Here’s a quick rundown.

Get ready

Get started by signing up for The Times Unshaken’s six-week newsletter course to help you prepare for an earthquake stress-free. You will learn about earthquake protection kits, what you can do to make your home safer, and the improvements you may need to hire a professional. Unshaken also offers advice on preparing your finances, including advice on earthquake insurance.

Then make sure you have the MyShake app installed on your phone. If you already have it, check the settings to receive alerts for your region. There are many other earthquake applications. Here’s how to figure them out.

If you are thinking of building an earthquake protection kit from scratch or buying a complete kit, watch our unboxing video. Jenn Harris of The Times and Lucas Kwan Peterson opened kits ranging from $ 30 to $ 300 to see what’s inside and because they love and write about food, the taste of emergency rations. (Spoiler: not really.)

Southern California homeowners need to assess whether seismic retrofitting makes sense for them. Older houses may require special attention, as well as houses with raised foundations and brick chimneys.

Do you live or work by the ocean? Here’s what you need to know about tsunamis.

Keep in mind that the most important thing you can do before an earthquake is to talk to your neighbors. This is the view of seismologist Lucy Jones, who believes that people are more important than kits and that strong ties with neighbors are what will help Southern California recover from a devastating earthquake.

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For more information, watch a video on earthquake and earthquake resilience featuring Rong-Gong Lin II of The Times and Patt Morrison, Jacob Margolis of KPCC / LAist, Austin Cross and Jones seismologist.

During the earthquake

While the ground is shaking, your physical safety is the most important thing, and the best course of action is to fall, take cover and hold on. Don’t run outside. Don’t stand in the door frame. Don’t try to use the debunked approach of self-preservation called the triangle of life.

  • Falling: Crawl under something solid, such as a table.
  • Shelter: Make sure your head and neck are protected.
  • Hold on: until the shaking stops, grab solid furniture and do not move.

further reading

California has an earthquake early warning system. Many of us have heard this test today. How does our system compare to the warning systems in Japan and Mexico?

Children will surely have questions and fears about earthquakes. Here’s how to talk to them and help them get ready.

People with disabilities may need to take special considerations into account when preparing.

Buying earthquake kits and accessories can be a financial burden. But there are ways to prepare for people on low incomes.

Angeleno love our pets. Here’s what your animals need before, during and after an earthquake. has an earthquake preparedness site including checklists for earthquake kits.

The Alliance of Earthquake Affected Countries also has extensive resources to prepare, survive and recover.

KPCC and LAist have produced a Big One podcast on what can happen during a major earthquake. The news organization also has resources and guidance, including on water storage.