Sunday, March 13, 2011

What to do before an Earthquake

Since earthquakes are on everybody's mind lately this is what you should do before an earthquake. Look around your house and see what things need to be rearranged in order to avoid heavy objects not only shifting but falling in the case of an earthquake. In addition to securing things, heavy items should always be placed on the lower shelves of bookcases. Then consider how you and your other family members are going to get together after a significant event. You should plan how your family is going to contact each other and talk about it with family. FEMA has a list of things to do before an earthquake. Go to the link.

During an earthquake you obviously need to seek shelter. Use common sense. One of the best things is to think about where you live and work and how you can make these places more secure. If you know you have a heavy fan over your bed, at the first sign of a tremor, get out of bed and move to a more secure spot. Possibly under or next to a strong piece of furniture like a desk or a doorway. What does FEMA suggest?

Finally what do you do after an earthquake? In one simple statement, check and proceed. Don't let childhood foolishness and the curiosity of a cat lure you into unsafe places. Avoid fallen power lines and leaking gas tanks! I would add save water because it will be gone almost instantly if you live in a high rise building or at a higher elevation. Actually, don't wait. I already have water stored in my garage in a plastic bag inside a plastic bin. It can be boiled if needed and is readily accessible. It will tie you over until the county or state steps in. I have gone through three hurricanes, and in two the water was out for days, and it was the water I had already stored that provided for my family and myself. Of course you do not know when an earthquake is coming, or if it ever will, but the same preparations you take for an earthquake, tornado or a hurricane will help you in the very least. FEMA has suggestions.

The final preparation is your relationship to God. Do you know him? Is your eternity secure in Him? God is alive and is an ever present help in time of trouble. When I went through a hurricane here in Orlando in 2004, God was right there with me. That was the year we had four hurricanes move through our state. I had barely moved into this house when Charlie came to call. During the severest part of the storm, a tree fell on my house just in time to prevent the front door from blowing in. I just didn't hear it. I was in my walk in closet and did not even hear the tree fall. My neighbors called me later to make sure I was alright. Early in the morning before I woke up, there they were chopping down all the branches so I could get out the front door! They had run to Home Depot and bought a chain saw and came right over. They were such good people! I thanked God for them! God will be faithful to you, too.

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