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Emergency Preparedness

Preparedness Checklist-Based on FEMA #526 Publication & ABAG Information

 Are You Prepared? 

  • Preparing lessens the impact of an emergency, such as an earthquake, on your home or business
  • Forget about 72 prepared for at least 5 to 7 days
  • It is important to be prepared in all three of the places you may be when an emergency strikes...your home, workplace or your car!

The Basics - items for your emergency kit

  • Experts recommend 1 gallon of water per person per day for drinking and hygiene
  • 2 gallons per person per day is ideal

 Factors that increase needed supply of water:

  • Hot weather
  • Strenuous survival activity after a disaster
  • Children, nursing mothers and sick people
  • Stored water in plastic bottles is okay, but has a very limited shelf life when stored in warm temperatures
  • Only use food grade containers if you store your own supply of water- and do not use it after 6 months
  • Commercial solutions are available for bulk water storage that will keep water safe to drink for 5 years
  • Be sure to have water purification tablets on hand to make potentially tainted water safe to drink


  • Be sure to store non-perishable foods to cover all members of your family or employees (and guests) for a minimum of 3 days, 7 days ideally
  • If you do not purchase specially prepared survival food, be sure to rotate foods throughout the year
  • Do not store foods that provoke thirst, use very little or no sodium (Salt)
  • Don't forget the special foods for infants and people with special dietary needs
  • Have a minimum supply of 800-1200 calories per person per day available

Other Survival Gear

  • Flashlights with spare batteries under your bed, at work and in your car. Be sure not to use candles until you are sure there are no gas leaks!
  • Portable radios and/or TVs with spare batteries or hand-cranked generator powered devices
  • First Aid kit and first aid guide at home and in your car-consider taking CPR and C.E.R.T courses
  • ABC Fire Extinguishers-First responders will be occupied elsewhere, especially right after a major quake. Be sure you know how to properly use your extinguisher!
  • Other Special Needs-medications, glasses, contact lens and solution, infant supplies like diapers, formula, bottles, medicines, etc.
  • Sanitation and Hygiene Supplies-Emergency toilet, toilet paper, feminine products, moist towelettes, etc.
  • Be sure to have your Important papers and cash. You will need copies of IDs, credit cards, insurance policies, and financial information
  • Tools-Gas and water shut-off wrench, matches or lighter, a signal whistle, etc.
  • Clothing-At least one complete change of clothes per person, you will need outdoor clothes and a sleeping bag
  • Pet Needs-Food, water, leash, veterinarian records, etc.

Home Preparedness

  • Prepare the inside of your home for an earthquake..
  • Know how to shut off your gas, electric and water. Know where each is located and which switches to shut off and valves to turn

 Earthquake Hazard Hunt

  •  Tour your home with a clipboard and write down everything that needs attention...
     Secure tall heavy furniture like armoires, bookcases, wall units, china cabinets, etc.
     Be sure your water heater is secured into the wall studs in the heater storage area
     Secure your appliances to avoid gas line ruptures or electrical shorts
     Secure or remove anything heavy hanging above your beds: large frame pictures, wall hangings, mirrors, trophies etc.
     Consider putting latches on kitchen or storage cabinets that will hold the door shut during shaking
     Secure heavy objects on high shelves (especially TVs) that could fall and cause injury or block an exit
     Get masonry chimneys inspected for stability-many fall through roofs during quakes
     Any flammable or hazardous liquids, chemicals stored on shelves in garages or elsewhere - consider storing them in an outdoor shed or fire-rated cabinet
     Consider placement of heavy hanging plants that could fall

Family Earthquake Drill
 Don't just discuss it...PRACTICE IT!
 Know the safe spots in each room to ride out a quake
 Get under heavy furniture, supported archways, against inside walls
 Stay away from windows, hanging objects, mirrors, fireplaces & tall furniture
 Literally yell "Earthquake!" and confirm that each member of the family goes to the right place-practice in bedrooms and in general living areas. This is especially important for young children!

How to Ride Out an Earthquake
 Limit yourself to only a few may not even be able to walk!
 Drop, cover and hold on under a heavy object. If none available, cover your face and head with your arms and crouch in an inside corner
 Stay away from glass, windows, heavy or tall objects
 If you are in bed, hold on and protect your head with a pillow unless under a ceiling fan or heavy light fixture
 Stay inside until the shaking stops. Be VERY careful exiting your home, especially if you have a tile roof!
 Stay where you are
 Move away from buildings, trees, streetlights and utility wires
In a Car:
 Stop as quickly as you can, pull to the side of the road and stay in the car
 Avoid stopping near or under buildings, trees, overpasses and utility wires
 Do NOT attempt to drive across bridges or overpasses that have been damaged
 Proceed cautiously after the quake has stopped
 Keep a pair of running or walking shoes in your car(s)

When the Ground Stops Shaking
Check for Injuries:
 If anyone around you has stopped breathing, give mouth to mouth resuscitation. Stop any bleeding. Do not move injured people unless they are in immediate danger of further injury. Cover the wounded with blankets
 Keep a battery powered radio and listen to updates from news stations
 Be aware of potential tsunamis if near the coast
 Do not use the phone unless there is a severe injury
 Wear shoes!
Check for Hazards:
 Put out small fires - Be careful of broken power lines
 Inspect your home with a battery powered flashlight. Turn the flashlight on outside
 Check gas, electrical and water lines and check appliances for damage or leaking
 Do NOT shut off your gas if you do not smell gas. Check after every aftershock
 Switch off electrical power if there is damage to your wiring
 Do not touch power lines or broken appliances
 Check the home for cracks and damage, especially around chimneys. Leave immediately if the building looks like it might collapse
 Clean up chemicals and flammable liquids
 Check to see that water and sewage lines are intact before flushing the toilet
 Plug tubs, sinks, and toilet to prevent water/waste backup
 Check your water and food supplies and move them to a safe place if necessary
 Check closets and cupboards VERY CAREFULLY. Watch for falling objects!
 Use outdoor grilles for cooking (outside)
 Do not use your car. Let the first responders do their job

If You Must Evacuate...
 Post a message in clear view that states who left and where you went
 Take your disaster supplies kit with you
 List reunion points in case of family separation
 Make sure everyone in your family knows where the reunion points are!
 Also be sure to designate an out-of-state contact that each member of your family can call to give their status and location. Be sure everyone has the phone number of the designated contact!



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