Your City Might Not Be Ready for the Next Big Quake

Science & Space

At 10:17 A.M. Pacific time today, millions of Americans around the country—and more people around the world—will practice for something they hope will never happen: a major earthquake. It’s called the Great ShakeOut, and it’s almost certainly the biggest disaster preparation drill in the world, involving some 24 million people working in schools, homes, hospitals and businesses. Started in California in 2008, the ShakeOut is meant to train people in how to respond to a major quake—if you’re indoors that means dropping to the floor, taking cover beneath a desk or table and holding on as securely as possible. You should also avoid any exterior walls, windows or hanging objects. Those outdoors should move to a clear and open area if possible, and avoid buildings and power lines that might fall on you.

Taking the right steps in the midst of a quake can mean the difference between life…

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