Shake out

It’s Always the Right Time to Get Prepared

Did you participate in the Great Shake Out earthquake drills that were taking place all across British Columbia on October 20? If you missed out, it’s not too late to get yourself—and your friends, family, neighbours and coworkers—prepared for the big one.

You may want to start with a little review of what you missed with the Great Shake Out, and practice dropping, covering and holding on.

Here’s a quick reminder of what emergency management experts and other official preparedness organizations agree is the safest course of action.

Drop… means drop quickly, on your terms before the earthquake shakes you down.

Cover… means getting under a sturdy desk or table.

Hold on… means just that, and keep holding on until the shaking stops.

If there is no table or desk present, it’s best to drop to the ground in an inside corner of the building and cover your head and neck with your arms and hands. You don’t want to try to move anywhere until after the shaking stops. Instead, it’s best to shield yourself as quickly as possible.

If you really want to feel ready for an earthquake, it’s best to physically as well as mentally know the steps. And this means practicing the steps regularly—even if it’s just once a year.

Of course, depending on where you are and your situation, you may need some further instructions, so feel free to peruse these extra guidelines to acquaint yourself with more location-specific safety steps you can take.

Once you feel confident about first-reaction safety procedures, you can begin to think further ahead, about surviving the aftermath of an earthquake. You can begin considering what survival items you might need, and even begin assembling a survival kit and making a plan with your household members.

But first, you’ve got to know those first steps and be able to do them in your sleep!

 -Article contributed by Sophie Wooding – Avid gardener and cyclist in Victoria, BC and Content Writer for

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