From the Red Cross: ” Nationally, polls show that only about one in every 14 people have taken the necessary measures to prepare for a disaster.
Perceptions are partly to blame — perceptions that disasters can be avoided easily and pose minimal risk to any single person. Another factor is complacency, which has several causes. Some of the complacency toward earthquakes stems from the fact that California is prone to temblors, and over time most residents become indifferent to warnings about them. In addition, many people believe that some level of risk is unavoidable, so they feel less motivated to prepare for unexpected emergencies.”
“During the past ten years, earthquakes throughout California have caused 120 deaths and an estimated $50 billion in reported damage.
Since devastating quakes give no warning, how well a family survives an earthquake can often depend on how well they prepare beforehand. With a little planning and effort, the risk of injury and damage can easily be reduced.”
Earthquakes in other countries cause many more deaths than in the United States:
Loma Prieta (6.9) 63 deaths, 27,000 buildings with severe damage
Northridge (6.7) 57 deaths, 14,000 buildings with severe damage
Kobe, Japan (7.1) 5,400 deaths, 150,000 buildings with severe damage
Turkey (7.4/7.2) 17,439 deaths, 115,000 buildings with severe damage
Our overarching goal is clear:
after the coming, major quake, you, your family and extended family will be
only somewhat inconvenienced
and less fearful.
for the purposes of our class your family is whatever you define it as:
relatives, spouse, future spouse
children, future children
co-workers, cycling club, soccer team you play on
Association of Bay Area Governments website
earthquake hazards maps,
estimates of levels of disruption to transportation systems
– look up your neighborhood, and your route to work or school at:
Many likely earthquake scenarios for the Bay Area will cause more damage than the Loma Prieta quake:
Ten plus years after Loma Prieta our infrastucture is vulnerable.
In the bay area there are thousands of soft structure apartments housing hundreds of thousands of people who will become homeless.
Over a thousand public school buildings and hospitals are vulnerable to life threatening earthquake damage.
1,700 stretches of road will be impassable after a major Hayward fault quake.
BART’s elevated tracks will lean.
The transbay tube will most likely crack and flood.
Not all of our overpasses and bridges have been retrofitted.
When to call an engineer- not just a contractor- about your home. (from the ABAG website)
· your foundation is brick or is “weak”
· your home has a porch that is recessed
under a second story
· part of your home is supported by posts,
not a wall
· your home has an unusual shape, is very
long and narrow, or is shaped like an
· your home is on a steep hill
· your home is almost touching an
· your home has a two-car or larger
garage with rooms above it, or is a
· your home has two or more stories
In the 1971 San Fernando quake numerous split level and two story wood frame houses were severely damaged because their first story garage walls were inadequately braced.
pictures are at:
Don’t run outside:
Duck, cover and hold on.
Unfortunately many people apply this incorrectly.
(1983, 6.7 magnitude) Coalinga schools reported that over 1,000 fluorescent bulbs fell from fixtures and fixtures fell down.
In a third floor high school chem lab chemicals overturned and burned through to the first floor.
File cabinets, movie screens and maps became projectiles.
immediately duck under a desk/table
in a hallway or stairs
4 a.m. quake
(Coalinga – 23 people with broken legs from being thrown to their feet.)
in a swimming pool
in a wheelchair
in a stadium/lecture hall
if you are at the beach and feel a quake big enough to make you have trouble standing up, or a strong quake that lasts 20 seconds or more, a tsunami with waves 10, 20 or even 100 feet high is coming within minutes and you must go to higher ground right away. You do not have time to pick up the picnic/towels/ swim gear or move your car. Grab friends/family and start running. Be carefull to avoid downed power lines and buildings that might be coming down in aftershocks.
Many of you are likely to have family member who still needs to be convinced to get ready and who must be involved for his family to be ready and safe.
You all need to get together within your work groups and circles of friends a week from now and compare notes on your progress.
Earthquake information sources includes the PG&E guide on how to turn off your gas and brace your water heater,
Common Myths about Earthquakes (including the triangle of life, animals predicting quakes, posistion of the moon and planets) and much more.
Once you are prepared, why not take it a step farther?
Community Emergency Response Team training in most cities is free.
Light Search and Rescue
Disaster Medical Operations
Become a blood donor.
Learn CPR (cardiopulmonary resuscitation) and first aid.
Again, we need to bring together information, ideas and technologies.