One of the many fears from earthquakes is never knowing when such natural hazards will happen or how disastrous the impacts will be.
California Gov. Jerry Brown signed an earthquake safety bill last Thursday as part of efforts to advance the development of a statewide early warning system. After a recent swarm of earthquakes in the Salton Sea, the California Governor’s Office of Emergency Services (Cal OES) declared SoCal on earthquake advisory until tomorrow, October 4.
"We've seen the devastation earthquakes have caused in California," said Gov. Brown in a statement. "This keeps us on track to build a statewide warning system that can potentially save lives."
Senate Bill 438 will establish the California Earthquake Early Warning Program and Advisory Board under the California Governor’s Office of Emergency Services (Cal OES), to forward the implementation of the program. An earthquake early warning program will be developed in early 2018.
"The early earthquake warning system will help save lives," said Senator Jerry Hill, D-San Mateo, in a statement. "In emergencies, every second counts and the urgent alerts that will be sent by the warning system can help prevent devastating and life-threatening missteps.”
The Long Beach Department of Health and Human Services urged residents to take the following precautions in case an earthquake strikes before the early warning program development is finalized:
- Create a safety plan in your household.
- Become aware of fire evacuation and earthquake plans for the building.
- Find safe places in each room of your home. Safe places are under furniture or against an interior wall away from windows or anything that could fall on you.
- Practice “drop, cover and hold on” in each safe place.
- Keep a flashlight and sturdy shoes by each bed in case an earthquake strikes at night.
- Bolt book cases, cabinets and other furniture to walls.
- Hang picture frames and mirrors away from where people sleep or sit.
- Learn how to shut off all utility connections such as gas and power panel.
- Always maintain an emergency supply kit in an accessible location.
For more information on emergency preparedness, click here.