Today’s blog contains text copied from three earlier blogs (#97, 98, & 99) posted during National Preparedness Month, October 2012.

Before An Earthquake
* Know critical needs of yourself and your family. * Be aware of any unique hazards near your home such as power lines, trees, or hills.
* Know the best escape route from each room, your home, and the neighborhood.
Also have an alternate route from each.
* Know where the gas, electric, and water shutoffs are located and how to use them.
Attach gas shutoff wrench to gas meter.
* Keep shoes, flashlight, and critical information (medical information, photo ID, keys, and contact telephone numbers, including an out-of-state contact for family members to contact and relay messages)
under bed in plastic bag.
* Develop a plan and have an emergency kit.

During An Earthquake
As we get closer to The California Great ShakeOut, we will review, courtesy of the City of Santa Rosa’s COPE Guide, the second phase of earthquake preparedness:

If you’re inside building: *Seek immediate shelter.
* Drop, Cover, and Hold at least 15 feet from any window or try to get under something that will protect you from falling debris such as a table or desk. Hold on to it.
* In a hallway, sit down against a wall and cover your head.
*Never run outside during the earthquake.
If you’re outside: * Move away from buildings to an open area.
* Watch for fallen power lines or light poles.

After An Earthquake:
* Check to see phones were not shaken off hooks. Only use phones for emergency calls.
* Check the situation, Call for backup if necessary, and Care for victims without jeopardizing your safety.
* Put out small fires and clean up spills. If fire is larger than a trash can, leave room, and close the door.
* If safe, take a walk around your home and carefully look for damage.
* Get car out of garage and load it with supplies to prepare for evacuation, if necessary.
* Call your out-of-state contact to check on safety of family members and relay messages.

How will you and your neighbors communicate during a disaster? Stay tuned.