Stay as safe as possible during an earthquake. Be aware that some earthquakes are actually foreshocks, and a larger earthquake might follow. Minimize your movements to a few steps that reach a nearby safe place, and stay indoors until the shaking has stopped, and you are sure exiting is safe.
- If you are indoors – stay there.
- Stay in bed if you are there when the earthquake strikes. Hold on, and protect your head with a pillow, unless you are under a heavy light fixture that could fall. In that case, move to the nearest safe place.
- DROP to the ground; take COVER by getting under a sturdy table or other piece of furniture, and HOLD ON until the shaking stops.
- If there is no a table or desk near you, cover your face, and head with your arms, and crouch in an inside corner of the building.
- Protect yourself by staying under the lintel of an inner door, in the corner of a room, under a table or even under a bed.
- Stay away from glass, windows, outside doors and walls, and anything that could fall, such as lighting fixtures or furniture.
- Don’t run downstairs or rush outside while the building is shaking or while there is danger of falling, and hurting yourself or being hit by falling glass or debris.
- Get out of the kitchen, which is a dangerous place where things can fall on you.
- Use a doorway for shelter only if it is in close proximity to you, and if you know it is a strongly supported; a load bearing doorway.
- Stay inside until the shaking stops, and it is safe to go outside. Research has shown that most injuries occur when people inside buildings attempt to move to a different location inside the building or try to leave.
- Be aware that the electricity may go out or the sprinkler systems or fire alarms may turn on.
- Free all pets and domestic animals so that they can run outside.
- Do not use candles, matches or other open flames. Put out all fires.
- Minimize your movements to a few steps that reach a nearby safe place, and stay indoors until the shaking has stopped, and you are sure exiting is safe.
- Don’t use elevators (they’ll probably get stuck anyway) and stairs.
- Stay as safe as possible during an earthquake.
- If you are outside – get into the open; away from buildings, power lines, chimneys, and anything else that might fall on you.
- Do not move from where you are. However, move away from buildings, trees, streetlights, and utility wires.
- Stay there until the shaking stops.
- The greatest danger exists directly outside buildings; at exits, and alongside exterior walls. Most earthquake-related casualties result from collapsing walls, flying glass, and falling objects.
If in a moving vehicle
- Stop as quickly as safety permits, and stay in the vehicle.
- Avoid stopping near or under buildings, trees, bridge, overpass, utility wires, light posts, power lines, or signboards.
- Stay inside your car until the shaking stops.
- Proceed cautiously once the earthquake has stopped. Avoid roads, bridges, or ramps that might have been damaged by the earthquake.Watch for breaks in the pavement, fallen rocks, and bumps in the road at bridge approaches.
If trapped under debris
- Do not light a match.
- Do not move about or kick up dust.
- Cover your mouth with a handkerchief or clothing.
- Tap on a pipe or wall so rescuers can locate you.
- Use a whistle if one is available.
- Shout only as a last resort.
- Shouting can cause you to inhale dangerous amounts of dust.
If in mountainous area
- Watch out for falling rock, landslides, trees, and other debris that could be loosened by quakes.
- Stay away from steep slopes, and landslide zones.
If in ocean
- If you are near the ocean, look out for Tsunami warning.
- Receding sea waters could be a warning sign.