Environmental Health & Safety
Environmental Health & Safety
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Environmental Health & Safety

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Earthquake Survival

  1. DO NOT call 911 unless you have an emergency.
  2. DO NOT call Mike Stickney. He will be very busy and cannot answer phone calls.
  3. Keep calm and stay where you are until the shaking stops.
  4. Take cover under a heavy desk or table. It can provide you with air space if the building collapses. If you get under a table and it moves, try to move with it. Inner walls or door frames are the least likely to collapse and may also shield against falling objects. If other cover is not available, go to an inner corner or doorway, away from windows or glass panels.
  5. Stay away from glass and hanging objects, and bookcases, or other large furniture that could fall. Watch for falling objects, such as bricks from fireplaces and chimneys, light fixtures, wall hangings, high shelves, and cabinets with doors that could swing open.
  6. Grab something to shield your head and face from falling debris and broken glass.
  7. If the lights go out, use a battery-operated flashlight. Don't use candles, matches, or lighters during or after the earthquake. If there is a gas leak, an explosion could result.
  8. If you are in a kitchen, quickly turn off the stove and take cover at the first sign of shaking.
  9. If outdoors, move away from buildings and utility wires. The greatest danger from falling debris is just outside doorways and close to outer walls. Once in the open, stay there until the shaking stops.
  10. If you are in a moving automobile, stop as quickly and safely as possible and move over to the shoulder or curb, away from utility poles, overhead wires, and under- or overpasses. Stay in the vehicle, set the parking brake, and turn on the radio for emergency broadcast information. A car may jiggle violently on its springs, but it is a good place to stay until the shaking stops. If you are in a life-threatening situation, you may be able to reach someone with either a cellular or an emergency roadside assistance phone.
  11. Be prepared for after shocks and tremors.
  12. Determine the magnitude of the damage to persons and property.
    • Complete a quick check, look for structural damage.
    • Look/smell for gas leaks.
    • Determine number and type of injuries.
  13. Open the Emergency Housing Center if TIP #12 seems to be critical. Do not over-react to earthquakes. The Emergency Housing Center should be opened only when it seems there is imminent danger to building and lives.
  14. Turn off gas mains. Do NOT light candles or fires.
  15. Assure sewer lines are intact before using sanitary facilities.
  16. Wear closed-toe shoes and carry a flashlight.
  17. Stay away from power lines, trees, and windows.
  18. Do not re-enter building or allow others to enter. Wait for structural engineers to determine integrity of building (if building seems critically damaged).
  19. Do not pull fire alarms if there is no fire. This creates a secondary diversion to the problem at hand.
  20. Search in pairs for individuals if Operations are begun.
  21. Make sure to look under desks and beds when searching for victims.
  22. Check water and boiler systems. Water may be contaminated.