We all must be prepared for major earthquakes, and also practice how to protect ourselves when they happen. The ShakeOut was created to help people and organizations do both. ShakeOut began as the 2008 Great Southern California ShakeOut and was the largest earthquake drill in U.S. history at the time with a total of 5.4 million participants spanning eight counties in the southern part of the state.
For its second year the Great California ShakeOut expanded to include the entire state– all 58 counties, divided into 11 areas. More than 6.9 million Californians participated, practicing Drop, Cover, and Hold On and other family, school, and organizational emergency plans. This year more than 7.9 million people participated in the 2010 California ShakeOut with Nevada and Guam conducting a drill on the same day.
The first British Columbia ShakeOut is being planned for January 26, 2011 and will be the largest earthquake drill to ever take place in Canada. Oregon will join British Columbia with a drill on the same day, which is the anniversary of a 9.0 magnitude earthquake in 1700 on the Cascadia subduction zone (off the coast of northern California, Oregon, Washington, and British Columbia.
The Central United States will have an eight-state ShakeOut drill on April 28, 2011 at 10:15 a.m., to commemorate the bicentennial of large earthquakes centered near New Madrid, MO, in 1811-1812. Alabama, Arkansas, Georgia, Illinois, Kentucky, Mississippi, Missouri, South Carolina, and Tennessee will participate. The Indiana ShakeOut will occur on April 19.
Utah and the country of New Zealand are planning 2012 ShakeOut drills, and Washington might join Oregon and British Columbia in a Cascadia-wide ShakeOut drill.
The main goal of the ShakeOut is to get everyone prepared for major earthquakes, so use the ShakeOut as an opportunity to learn what to do before, during, and after an earthquake. The ShakeOut is not something you need to leave work to participate in. Businesses, organizations, schools, and government agencies can register. Anyone can participate, from a single individual at their home to a major company at the office. Talk to your coworkers, neighbors and friends about the ShakeOut and encourage their participation.
As a registered ShakeOut participant you will:
- Be counted in the largest earthquake drill ever!
- Be included on lists of who is participating in your area
- Be an example that motivates others to participate and get prepared
- Be updated with ShakeOut news and other information about earthquakes and preparedness
Central U.S.: http://www.shakeout.org/centralus/
British Columbia: http://www.shakeoutbc.ca/