On January 18, multiple quakes struck central Italy, rocking Rome with magnitudes of up to 5.3 on the Richter scale. The Metro and some schools were evacuated because of the shaking but thankfully, no deaths or serious damage have been reported.
Over the past few months, Rome has been experiencing a number of quakes, like the one in August causing 300 deaths and flattening thousands of homes and businesses. As residents wonder what is coming next, our thoughts and prayers are with those who are fearful or who have lost loved ones and homes. We really can never know what it’s like unless we’ve experienced such a disaster ourselves. All we can do is prepare the best we can.
Every time we hear of an earthquake, it’s a reminder to plan ahead and be as prepared as possible. After a quake, it’s almost impossible not to wonder what would have happened if things had gone just slightly differently.
During a quake, you probably won’t have much time to think, and that’s why going through the motions is so crucial. Here are some things that are important for you to know ahead of time:
- Know the immediate steps off by heart: drop, cover and hold on.
- Know your house like the back of your hand. Know each of your escape routes and all alternative exits.
- Know exactly where your emergency supplies are. (Ideally, they are packed in an easy-to-grab bag in an easy-to-reach place.)
- Know who is home, so nobody gets left behind.
- Know how much gas is in your car, in case you need to evacuate the area. (Ideally, your tank is pretty full!)
- Know how to use—or prepare—everything in your quake kit.
Even if you’ve prepared as much as possible, an earthquake will still bring with it some unknowns. Knowing more and being prepared will hopefully benefit not only you, but the community that surrounds you.
-Article contributed by Sophie Wooding – Avid gardener and cyclist in Victoria, BC and Content Writer for Frontier.io