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Yes, We Live in Earthquake Country!
March 16, 2011
Yes, We Live in Earthquake Country!
The tragedies following the recent earthquakes in Japan reminds us of our own vulnerability with living in California’s earthquake country. Knowledgeable U.S. Geologic Survey scientists indicate a 62% probability of a 6.7 magnitude or greater earthquake occurring in the San Francisco Bay Area within the next 30 years. We cannot stop Mother Nature; however, individually, we can certainly lend our efforts towards becoming prepared by incorporating the four pillars of preparedness into our normal routine. The emergency preparedness pillars are: Make a Kit, Make a Plan, Get Informed, and Get Involved.
Being prepared and staying prepared is the key. We are a diverse community and should consider our own personal and family needs when following the four pillars of preparedness.
Additional information is available from the U.S. Department of Homeland Security (www.ready.org), American Red Cross (www.redcross.org), State of California (http://cms.calema.ca.gov/preparednesshome.aspx), Noah’s Wish (www.noahswish.info), and Collaborating Agencies Responding to Disaster (www.CARDcanhelp.org)
Make a Kit:
Because Mother Nature is unpredictable, having at least three days worth of emergency preparedness supplies at work, school, and personal vehicle is recommended; have at least 10 to 14 days supply at home. Remember each family member (including pets) should be considered when making your kit. Basic items such as non-perishable food and water are required for each family member. The recommended supplies to include in a Basic Kit are:
• Water one gallon per person per day, for drinking and sanitation
• Food of least a 3-day supply of non-perishable food
• Battery-powered radio and extra batteries
• First Aid Kit
• Whistle to signal for help
• Filter Mask or cotton t-shirt, to help filter air
• Moist towelettes for sanitation
• Wrench or pliers to turn off utilities
• Manual can opener for food (if kit contains canned food)
• Plastic sheeting and duct tape to shelter-in-place
• Garbage bags and plastic ties for personal sanitation
• Unique family needs such as daily prescription medications, infant formula or diapers, and important family documents.
For more details, please refer to the “Livermore-Pleasanton Fire Department Family Disaster Preparedness Guide” document on this website.
Make a Plan:
Take the time now to pre-plan by developing your personal/family communications plan, shelter-in-place plan, and evacuation plan. Also, if you have children in school, get to know your school’s emergency plan. For more details on how to develop your plan, please read the “Livermore-Pleasanton Fire Department Family Disaster Preparedness Guide” document available on this website. Also, there is more information available on www.ready.gov or www.redcross.org. For family members with access and functional needs, these two sites have good information, as well as www.CARDcanhelp.org.
Learn about what to do before, during and after disaster strikes such as preparing your home by doing a hazard hunt and mitigating them. Anything that is not anchored down and can become airborne when an earthquake jolts through your neighborhood, either move it, anchor it or remove it to a location where they will not injure you. Learn how and when to properly turn off utilities. Learn how to safely “Drop, Cover, & Hold On” at home, work and school. When emergencies or disaster strike, listen to either KCBS (740 AM or FM 106.9) or KKIQ FM 101.7 for emergency information. The websites mentioned above contain excellent recommendations. Also, for non-emergency information during times of disaster, call “211” information and referral for help with food, housing, employment, health care, counseling and more (for more information visit: www.211.org). Save “911” for life-threatening emergencies. The Livermore-Pleasanton Fire Department offers a 60-minute Emergency Preparedness Awareness session for groups of 20 or more. To schedule a presentation, please call (925) 454-2317 or email TogetherWePrepare@lpfire.org.
Become a member of your neighborhood’s Community Emergency Response Team (CERT) and conduct annual earthquake drills. To learn more about becoming CERT trained, please email CERT@lpfire.org for more information. The State of California’s Annual Shake Out exercise is the third Thursday in October. Visit www.shakeout.org to join more than eight million Californians and register your family, neighborhood, or workplace.
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