Earthquake Safety Tips

  • Prepare Your Family
  • Check for Hazards in the Home
  • Identify Safe Places
  • During the Quake
  • After the Quake

Prepare Your Family

  • Discuss how you and your family will respond to a possible emergency. Know how to contact all family members at all times. Think 24/7 and 365.
  • Draw a floor plan of your home. If possible, mark two escape routes from each room.
  • Select two places to meet: a spot outside your home for an emergency, and a place away from your neighborhood in case you cannot return home (a real possibility during the day when most adults are at work and children are at school).
  • Identify an out-of-town friend or relative as your “emergency family check-in contact” for everyone to call if the family gets separated. Make sure all family members have that number. It is often easier to call of-of-town during an emergency than within the affected area.
  • Post emergency contact numbers near all telephones. Include local police, fire and health departments, poison control, your children’s schools, doctors, child/senior care providers and insurance agents.
  • Make sure everyone knows how and when to call 9-1-1 or your local emergency medical services phone number.
  • Know your local radio and television stations that can provide you with up-to-date information during an emergency. Make sure you know which of your stations are part of the Emergency Alert System (EAS). These EAS stations are the primary outlets for official information on protective actions.
  • Install safety features in your home such as smoke detectors and fire extinguishers.
  • Have your family learn basic safety and first aid measures.
  • Keep family records in a water- and fireproof safe.
  • Have emergency supplies on hand.
  • Know how to turn off the water, gas and electricity at main switches. If for any reason you do turn off natural gas service to your home, call your natural gas utility to restore service. DO NOT attempt to restore gas service yourself.
  • Earthquakes are not covered under standard home-owners insurance policies. Consider purchasing earthquake insurance.