Knowing the do’s and don’ts can help you survive when the Big One strikes. Use these survival tips to prepare yourself for an earthquake at work.
Before the Earthquake
- You must know how to act and be prepared so your response is automatic. Identify the safest places in your work area to drop, cover, and hold. Know at least two ways to exit the building after the earthquake.
- Prepare an emergency survival kit: portable radio, extra batteries, flashlight, whistle, blankets, clothes, shoes, money, and first aid kit. Also, prepare food and water that can last for three days.
- Plan your work area for safety. Place heavy objects on low shelves and breakable objects in cabinets with latches. Anchor bookcases, large file cabinets, and artworks.
During the Earthquake
- Stay calm as the quake occurs so that others will follow you. If you’re indoors, move away from windows and unsecured furniture. Protect your head, neck, and face and stay under a sturdy table or along an interior wall until the shaking stops and debris settles.
- If you’re outdoors, look for and stay in an open area away from falling hazards like trees, buildings, and power lines. Drop to the ground, cover your head and neck, and hold until the shaking stops.
After the Earthquake
- Stay calm and check yourself and other for injuries. Administer first aid but don’t move injured people unless they’re in danger.
- Expect and prepare for aftershocks that can last for days for large earthquakes.
- Assess your surroundings and know how to access and use your survival kit. Plan how to move around and exit in the dark. Beware of unstable objects and structures.
- If possible, leave the building with extreme caution. Take your personal belongings and lookout for falling debris and other threats. Don’t attempt to enter damaged buildings until an “all clear” signal is given.
- If possible, use your telephone to report emergencies. Cellphone lines can be jammed, so if can’t make a call just send a text message because they can take less bandwidth.
Do you have other tips for earthquake survival? Please share your thoughts and comments below.