What to do during an earthquake?



past quakes

what to do during an earthquake?

first aid / survival kits


If your are indoors:

Stay there and move to the closest previously identified safe object in the room. Apply the Triangle of Life survival method: lay down beside the object, curled up in the fetal position protecting your eyes and head. In case the earthquake should come while you are sleeping in a bed, simply role out of the bed, and curl up into a fetal position next to it, protecting your eyes and head. (Locate now the safest place to be in each room.)
DO NOT remain in or go to the kitchen, which, due to potential gas leaks, is a very dangerous place to be.
DO NOT get under a doorway. If the doorjamb falls forward or backwards you will be crushed by the ceiling above. If it falls sideways you will be cut in half.
DO NOT run downstairs or rush outside while the building is shaking. Stairwells have a different movement of frequency than the rest of the building, are generally the first structures to collapse during earthquakes, and have an almost certain death rate.
DO NOT get in an elevator. Elevators are similar to stairwells in that they often collapse before the rest of the building, the cables and bolts giving way first, leaving the elevator at a freefall until it reaches the elevator pit.
Note: If you are on the first level when the earthquake begins, and are in a position to exit the building within five seconds, do so, either through the door, or through a window. This would especially be the case if you have a Quake Alarm. The exception to this would be if the proximity of surrounding structures was too close, the result being the likelihood of those structures falling on top of you. Decide now if exiting the building would be a wise decision.

If you are outdoors:

Move to OPEN AREAS, away from rivers, bridges, buildings, trees, power lines, overpasses, balconies, plain brick walls, and anything else that may fall on top of you. (Be aware of your surroundings on a moment by moment basis, knowing where you would go should the earthquake occur.)
DO NOT try to walk through narrow roads or gullies.

If you are driving or in a vehicle:

STOP SLOWLY, moving your vehicle as far out of traffic as possible. Avoid stopping on or under a bridge, near buildings, overpasses, trees, light posts, power lines, or signs. If you are in an open area away from these dangers, STAY INSIDE your vehicle until the shaking stops. The vehicle will protect you from flying debris. However, if you are in danger of falling objects (i.e. buildings, overpasses, large trees, etc.) GET OUT of the vehicle and apply the Triangle of Life next to it. Should you resume driving after the earthquake, drive slowly and watch for people, cracks in the roads, fallen buildings, stones, trees, etc.

If you are on a motorcycle:

Try to move away from the dangers listed above. If you cannot, GET OFF the bike and apply the Triangle of Life next to it. Several victims have gone on record crediting their survival to lying down next to a motorcycle which provided them with a triangle of life. If you are under an overpass or bridge, leave your bike and move to the closest open area.

If you are driving or in a top-heavy vehicle (i.e. bus, micro, tuk-tuk):

Move away from the dangers listed above and stay in the vehicle.

If you are on a bicycle or rickshaw:

GET OFF and move to an open area away from the dangers listed above. If it is not possible to move to an open area, apply the Triangle of Life survival method beside a nearby vehicle.

If you are in a mountainous area:

WATCH OUT for falling rocks, landslides, trees, and other debris that could be loosened by the earthquake. General Rule: If you are in a vehicle riding through a mountainous area when the earthquake hits, stay in your vehicle. The exception would be if you knew the vehicle was about to be buried in a landslide. In this situation, it would be better to try and get out of the vehicle and move as far away from the potential landslide as possible. Your chances of surviving the landslide will be greater outside the vehicle.