How You Can Really Help After a Disaster: Get Yourself Prepared How You Can Really Help After a Disaster: Get Yourself Prepared
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How You Can Really Help After a Disaster: Get Yourself Prepared

by Alissa Walker

March 21, 2011

First, start thinking about earthquakes as a timeline, using the Seven Steps for Earthquake Safety that can give you a simple, seven-step path from preparedness to recovery. Two steps to note: Making a disaster plan including two places to meet (the second being a backup in case the first isn't safe), and assembling an emergency kit with enough food, water, and medical supplies. And remember you'll need three of these: For home, work, and car.

Next, do some redecorating before an earthquake does it for you. This game called Beat the Quake walks you through the furnishings in your house item by item and gives you tips on how to best secure them. (I'll be making a trip to Home Depot to stock up on furniture straps, velcro, and putty.)

Now, think about where you'll be when an earthquake strikes. Notice in the videos of earthquakes how most people run outside? Not a good idea. Neither is standing in doorways. Drop, Cover, and Hold On uses easy-to-read graphics to show you exactly what to do, no matter where you are. If an earthquake strikes when you're in bed, do you know what to do? Now you do.

Finally, hold a dress rehearsal. The Great California Shake Out is a state-wide drill that happens annually each October. There's information there on how to participate. But there's no reason why you can't conduct your own this weekend.

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How You Can Really Help After a Disaster: Get Yourself Prepared