Seven Steps to Earthquake Safety

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For more history and checklists released by Creston Board in 2014.

When it comes to disaster, there are simple things you can do to make yourself safer. The information on this page is designed as a step-by-step guide to give you details on what to do before, during, and after an earthquake. Start with the simple tips within each step so that you can build on your accomplishments.

An example of this in Step 1 is moving heavy, unsecured objects from top shelves onto lower ones. This will only take minutes to complete and you are safer from that hazard!

The information in the steps linked below will help you learn how to better prepare to survive and recover, wherever you live, work, or travel.


Before the next big earthquake we recommend these four steps that will make you, your family, or your workplace better prepared to survive and recover quickly:

Step 1:
Secure your space by identifying hazards and securing moveable items.
Step 2:
Plan to be safe by creating a disaster plan and deciding how you will communicate in an emergency.
Step 3:
Organize disaster supplies in convenient locations.
Step 4:
Minimize financial hardship by organizing important documents, strengthening your property, and considering insurance.

Survive and Recover

During the next big earthquake, and immediately after, is when your level of preparedness will make a difference in how you and others survive and can respond to emergencies:

Step 5:
Drop, Cover, and Hold On when the earth shakes.
Step 6:
Improve safety after earthquakes by evacuating if necessary, helping the injured, and preventing further injuries or damage.

After the immediate threat of the earthquake has passed, your level of preparedness will determine your quality of life in the weeks and months that follow:

Step 7:
Reconnect and Restore
Restore daily life by reconnecting with others, repairing damage, and rebuilding community.



Steps to Earthquake Safety:


               Before a quake


               Identify hazards and fix them, to include:

                             Secure hot water heater

                             Secure book cases and top heavy furniture


               Create a disaster-preparedness plan

                             Establish a contact out of the area and make sure everyone has the number


               Create disaster kits (3-5 days) for home/car

                             A gallon of water per person per day

                             First aid, medications, soap, toothpaste, toilet paper, etc

                             Battery radio, flashlights and extra batteries

                             Canned/packaged goods and cooking utensils, manual can opener

                             Warm clothing, blankets, sturdy shoes

                             Pet food, leashes

                             Copies of insurance policies, personal IDs

                             Comfort items for children


               During a quake

Protect yourself


               After a quake

                             Check for injuries and damage

                             When safe, follow your disaster-preparedness plan

                             Turn off gas if needed (vertical is on, horizontal is off)

                                            PG&E will turn gas back on



                             Red Cross




                             Association of Bay Area Governments