In Case of an Earthquake
Protecting yourself and your family
- Be sure that all family members know how to turn off utilities (gas, water and electricity) in an emergency.
- Make sure every family member knows where safe spots are in each room, such as under sturdy tables or desks or in strong doorways.
- Identify danger zones in each room, such as windows, bookshelves and furniture, that may fall over and cause injuries.
Protecting your property
- Check to see that your house has been properly "tied" to the foundation. Extensive damage is often done to homes that shift and slide on the foundation during an earthquake. A contractor can advise you about this and suggest whether lateral bracing of the house walls is necessary.
- Be sure that water heaters and other gas appliances are properly bolted down or supported on the floor or wall.
- Put the heavier, breakable items on lower shelves.
- Search the ceiling and foundation for deep plaster cracks. Make the necessary repairs if there are signs of structural defects.
- Make an inventory of your possessions and store it off the premises. If your belongings are damaged, this list will help facilitate the claim filing process.