The most important component in earthquake safety recovery is to create a plan for you and your family prior to the disaster, and to practice it. Several key points make up an earthquake recovery plan including:
After the safety of your family, preparing your home for an earthquake should be your next priority when developing a recovery plan. If you live in a fault area and are susceptible to frequent earthquakes, there are steps you can take to make your home more secure in the event of a disaster. If you don't think you have time to execute these measures – make time. These steps could reduce damage to your home and return you and your family to your normal, everyday lives. Remember: Earthquakes can happen at any time – without warning.
If you live in a particularly vulnerable area for earthquake activity, you might also consider attending training for neighborhood residents for home preparedness, first aid, fire suppression and damage assessment. Developing a network of families in your neighborhood for an earthquake resource bank is a helpful tool. This would identify the special skills of those who live around you and a list of equipment and materials that can be shared.
Make special arrangements for the elderly, handicapped persons, those who are under medication and pets. Be mindful of those who cannot speak English. It's helpful to create information cards, written in English, indicating identification, address and special needs.
Also, know the location of the nearest police station in your area. Local fire stations will most likely be empty and locked for days following an earthquake, as teams will be aiding in earthquake rescue.
It's also recommended to identify a message drop for your family. Secure a location outside your home where your family can leave messages for each other in case you are separated or unable to remain in your home. Don't publicize that you are not home . Examples of a drop point can be inside a tin can, in the backyard or under a stone.
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