If you are indoors when shaking starts:
- “DROP, COVER AND HOLD ON.” If you are not near a strong table or desk, drop to the floor against an interior wall and cover your head and neck with your arms.
- Avoid windows, hanging objects, mirrors, tall furniture, large appliances and cabinets filled with heavy objects.
- Do not try to run out of the structure during strong shaking.
- Stay away from buildings. Glass from tall buildings does not always fall straight down; it can catch a wind current and travel great distances.
- If you are in bed, stay there and cover your head with a pillow.
- Do not use elevators.
- If you use a wheelchair, lock the wheels and cover your head.
If you are outdoors when shaking starts:
- Move to a clear area if you can safely walk. Avoid power lines, buildings and trees.
- If you’re driving, pull to the side of the road and stop. Avoid stopping under overhead hazards.
- If you are on the beach, move to higher ground. An earthquake can cause a tsunami.
Once the earthquake shaking stops:
- Check the people around you for injuries; provide first aid. Do not move seriously injured persons unless they are in immediate danger.
- Check around you for dangerous conditions, such as fires, downed power lines and structure damage.
- If you have fire extinguishers and are trained to use them, put out small fires immediately.
- Turn off the gas only if you smell gas.
- Check your phones to be sure they have not shaken off the hook and are tying up a line.
- Inspect your home for damage.
If you are trapped in debris:
- Move as little as possible so that you don’t kick up dust. Cover your nose and mouth with a handkerchief or clothing.
- Tap on a pipe or wall so that rescuers can hear where you are. Use a whistle if one is available. Shout only as a last resort.
Earthquake Mythology (Read the Facts)