Get ready for the Shake Out

Sunday, August 30, 2015

On Thursday, Oct. 15, at 10:15 a.m. the Great Central U.S. Shake Out will occur in 13 states. This is an emergency drill intended to help residents in the New Madrid Red Zone learn how to prepare in the event of an earthquake. Alabama, Arkansas, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Mississippi, Missouri, Nebraska, Ohio, and Oklahoma will be participating.

"The challenge in trying to prepare for an earthquake is the fact that there is no time to prepare in advance," said Jeff Briggs, earthquake program manager for the Missouri State Emergency Management Agency. "Some ways to prepare is to make sure that heavier objects are placed on lower shelves and securing furniture that could tip over to the wall."

If an earthquake should occur Briggs advises the drop, cover, and hold on response. "This is to protect yourself from debris. Make sure to cover your head and neck until after the shaking stops," he recommended.

Organizers of the event encourage people between now and October 15 to consider the ramifications of an earthquake. Begin planning what to do now to prepare so that when or if such an event should occur you will be able to protect yourself and your family.

There is an audio and video "drill broadcast" recording that can be downloaded that will provide instruction during the Shake Out. Spread the word to community organizations and encourage them to participate.

On October 15 at 10:15 a.m. drop, cover, and hold. Drop to the ground, take cover under a table or desk, and hold on as if a major earthquake were happening. Stay down for at least 60 seconds.

Another recommendation that experts say is a good way to prepare for the event of an earthquake is to prepare an emergency kit.

The American Red Cross suggests these items be included in a survival kit:

Two week supply of water, one gallon per person per day.

Two week supply of nonperishable food.

Manual can opener.

Flashlight.

Battery powered radio.

Extra batteries.

First aid kit.

Seven day supply of medication.

Multipurpose tool.

Sanitation and personal hygiene items.

Copies of personal document.

Cell phones with chargers.

Family and emergency contact numbers.

Extra cash.

Emergency blankets.

Maps of the area.

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