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Earthquake Preparedness

Graphic showing person dropping, crawling under a table and covering their head during an earthquake

What to do When the Earth Shakes

DROP where you are, onto your hands and knees. This position protects you from being knocked down and also allows you to stay low and crawl to shelter if nearby.

COVER your head and neck with one arm and hand.

  • If a sturdy table or desk is nearby, crawl underneath it for shelter.
  • If no shelter is nearby, crawl next to an interior wall (away from windows).   
  • Stay on your knees; bend over to protect vital organs.

HOLD ON until shaking stops.

  • Under shelter: hold on to it with one hand; be ready to move with your shelter if it shifts
  • No shelter: hold on to your head and neck with both arms and hands.

If you are near the ocean and feel a large earthquake, Drop, Cover, and Hold On until the shaking stops. Then walk inland and up to high ground. Do not wait for an official warning. A tsunami could come ashore in a few minutes.