Everyone should know how to protect themselves during earthquakes– at home, at work, at school, or even while traveling.

Before a Quake: To prevent potential injuries, take the time to secure your space. Secure items that might fall, fly, or slide in an earthquake. Periodically review the locations where you spend time—your home, workplace, or school—to look for potential hazards and secure them. 

This easy-to-read booklet from FEMA features instructions on conducting earthquake drills and “hazard hunts.” Also included is a checklist of disaster supplies.

During a Quake: Minimize your movements to a few steps to a nearby safe place. If you are indoors, Drop, Cover, then Hold On until the shaking stops and are sure it is safe to exit. 

Drop Cover Hold OnAfter a Quake: USGS recommends what to do after an earthquake:

1. Wear sturdy shoes to avoid injury from broken glass and debris

2. Check for injuries

  • If a person is bleeding, put direct pressure on the wound, use clean gauze or cloth if available.
  • If a person is not breathing administer CPR.
  • DO NOT attempt to move seriously injured persons unless they are in further danger of injury.
  • COVER injured persons with blankets to keep warm.
  • SEEK medical help for serious injuries.

3. Check for hazards

  • Put out fires in your home or neighborhood immediately, call for help.
  • Shut off the main gas valve ONLY if you suspect a leak because of broken pipes or odor.
  • Shut off power at the control box if there is any danger to the house wiring.
  • Do not touch downed power lines or any objects in contact with them.
  • Clean up any spilled medicines, drugs, or other harmful materials such as bleach, lye or gas.

View the full list here

The Great ShakeOut 

Great ShakeOut Earthquake Drills are a once a year chance in October for everyone to practice “Drop, Cover, and Hold On” and learn other earthquake safety tips. Visit for more information.