The Great California ShakeOut Returns on Oct. 17 at 10:17 a.m.

Great California shakeout

The California Earthquake Authority is bringing back the Great California ShakeOut Drill on Oct. 17 at 10:17 a.m. to help Californians across the state to get prepared ahead of a major quake.

In fact, Californians were reminded of that fact when a pair of large earthquakes, as a pair of magnitude 7.1 and 6.4 earthquakes struck near Ridgecrest last July. While there was relatively little damage from the quakes, it was a good reminder for Californians that we live on occasionally unstable ground.

Last year, more than 10 million Californians participated in the annual earthquake drill and more than 63 million people participated in the Great ShakeOut Drills worldwide.

This year, the CEA returns with the Great California ShakeOut scheduled for Thursday, Oct. 17 at 10:17 a.m. If you'd like to register to participate in the ShakeOut, you can register at

Getting prepared should on on every Californian's list as one report says most residents in the state live within 30 miles of an active fault, some of which have a high probability of generating large, damaging earthquakes over the next few years/decades.

Perhaps the most infamous, the Northern and Southern sections of the San Andreas fault are some of the most unstable. Scientists say the Northern San Andreas, Hayward-Rodgers Creek and Calaveras faults. One estimate from scientists in 2015 said that there was a 98% chance of a 6.0 magnitude quake striking the Bay Area between 2014 and 2043.

Southern California doesn't get off easy either. The Southern San Andreas, Raymond, Santa Monica, Hollywood, Newport-Inglewood, San Jacinto, and Elsinore faults are among the closely watched faults by scientists. One estimate said that there was a 75% chance that a major earthquake of 7.0 or above could strike the Southland between 2014 and 2043.

Scientists say they're still discovering new faults snaking through Southern California.

Great California

Everyone living in Southern California knows the risks of earthquakes and the amount of damage they can do, however, you can take steps to become better prepared for when a major earthquake strikes the Southland.

Get Prepared:

  • Secure your space.Identify hazards and secure movable items.
  • Plan to be safe. Create a disaster plan and decide how you will communicate in an emergency.
  • Organize disaster supplies. Place emergency kits in convenient locations.
  • Minimize financial hardship. Collect important documents, retrofit your older house if built before 1980 and purchase earthquake insurance.

During an Earthquake

Drop, Cover, and Hold On.

Know how to “Drop, Cover, and Hold On” when the ground shakes. In most situations, you will reduce your chance of injury if you:

  • DROP onto your hands and knees where you are and, if possible, crawl under a table or sturdy desk or by an interior wall (away from windows).
  • COVER your head and neck with one arm and hand; bend over to protect vital organs.
  • HOLD ON to a table leg with your other hand until shaking stops.
  • For more details, such as what to do if you use a wheelchair or walker or if you are in bed or are driving when an earthquake strikes, visit

After an Earthquake

  • Reconnect and restore. Restore daily life by reconnecting with others, repairing damage, and rebuilding your community.
  • If you have earthquake insurance coverage, take pictures of earthquake damage to your house and belongings before cleaning up.
  • Contact your home insurance company to file a claim to help cover costs to repair expensive earthquake damage and costs from having to live elsewhere until repairs are completed.
  • Keep handy all earthquake-related records and receipts for earthquake insurance claims.

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