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Less than a day after a 6.4 earthquake shook Southern California on July 4th, the region was hit by another 7.1 quake on Friday night.
This was the strongest earthquake California had seen in 20 years, causing economic losses estimated between $10 million and $100 million. A number of smaller aftershocks are expected in the coming days.
So now it's time to be prepared.
How To Prepare Before:
Talk about earthquakes with your family so that everyone knows what to do in case of an earthquake. Discussing ahead of time helps reduce fear, particularly for younger children
Check at your workplace and your children's schools and day care centers to learn about their earthquake emergency plans.
Pick safe places in each room of your home, workplace and/or school. A safe place could be under a piece of furniture or against an interior wall away from windows, bookcases or tall furniture that could fall on you.
Practice DROP, COVER and HOLD ON in each safe place.
Keep a flashlight and any low-heeled shoes by each person’s bed.
Have an emergency kit for your companion animals ready
When it comes to your home, there's some things you should do before:
Bolt and brace water heaters and gas appliances to wall studs. Have a professional install flexible fittings to avoid gas or water leaks.
Do not hang heavy items, such as pictures and mirrors, near beds, couches and anywhere people sleep or sit.
Install strong latches or bolts on cabinets. Large or heavy items should be closest to the floor.
Learn how to shut off the gas valves in your home and keep a wrench handy for that purpose.
Place large and heavy objects and breakable items (bottled foods, glass or china) on lower shelves.
Anchor overhead lighting fixtures to joists.
Anchor top-heavy, tall and freestanding furniture such as bookcases, china cabinets to wall studs to keep these from toppling over.
Ask about home repair and strengthening tips for exterior features, such as porches, decks, sliding glass doors, canopies, carports and garage doors.
Learn about your area’s seismic building standards and land use codes before you begin new construction.
Have a professional make sure your home is securely anchored to its foundation, as well as strengthening tips for exterior features, such as porches, decks, sliding glass doors, canopies, carports and garage doors.
For more information, listen to Dean Sharp's conversation with Jeanne M. Woo, the Senior Disaster Program Manager of the American Red Cross Los Angeles Region, on how you can prepare yourself for future earthquakes below:
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