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An earthquake is a sudden, rapid shaking of the earth caused by the breaking and shifting of rock beneath the earth’s surface. As part of ISU’s One Responsible Source offering, we provide clients with valuable trainings, like emergency preparedness.
One of the most frightening and destructive phenomena of nature is a severe earthquake and its terrible aftereffects.
For hundreds of millions of years, the forces of plate tectonics have shaped the earth, as the huge plates that form the earth’s surface slowly move over, under and past each other. While earthquakes are sometimes believed to be a West Coast occurrence, there are actually 45 states and territories throughout the United States that are at moderate to high risk for earthquakes including the New Madrid fault line in Central U.S.
The 2011 East Coast earthquake illustrated the fact that it is impossible to predict when or where an earthquake will occur, so it is important that you and your family are prepared ahead of time. The following are things you can do to protect yourself, your family and your property in the event of an earthquake. To begin preparing, you should build an emergency kit and make a family communications plan.
Store breakable items such as bottled foods, glass, and china in low, closed cabinets with latches. Fasten heavy items such as pictures and mirrors securely to walls and away from beds, couches and anywhere people sit. Secure your water heater, refrigerator, furnace and gas appliances by strapping them to the wall studs and bolting to the floor.
Store weed killers, pesticides, and flammable products securely in closed cabinets with latches and on bottom shelves.
Stay away from glass, windows, outside doors and walls, and anything that could fall, such as lighting fixtures or furniture. Do not use a doorway except if you know it is a strongly supported, load-bearing doorway and it is close to you.
Be aware that the electricity may go out or the sprinkler systems or fire alarms may turn on. After it is determined that its’ safe to return, your safety should be your primary priority as you begin clean up and recovery.
Put on long pants, a long-sleeved shirt, sturdy shoes and work gloves to protect against injury from broken objects. Everyone knows that Japan is an earthquake-prone country, but the events of March 2011 made it much more real for many of us living in Japan or considering a move to Japan.
We can learn how to be prepared by seeing how Japanese society prepares and educates their citizens to respond to earthquakes.
The image above is an example of the type of information you would see on the screen if there is no risk of a tsunami. The screenshot above shows that there is a risk of a tsunami coming and you should evacuate from low-lying areas near the water without delay. NHK World broadcasts in 18 different languages, so you can also seek information there, though it will not come through as quickly. Prior to or in the event of an earthquake, follow the steps below to reduce your risk of injury and improve your quality of life in the immediate aftermath. Did you know that a magnitude 7.0 (or greater) earthquake could occur anywhere in Japan at anytime?
All residents and institutions in Japan (including foreign-owned schools and companies) are expected to have made a reasonable effort to prepare for emergency situations. To increase your earthquake literacy try to attend any briefings or workshops organized by your company, children’s school or community group, if available, or contact WaNavi Japan for details about how to organize one!
Another important and potentially life saving step is to learn some basic Japanese words and phrases that may help you to respond correctly to instructions and requests from authorities. In Japan, there is an old saying "?????????, sonae areba urei nashi", which means, "be prepared and have no regrets". WaNavi Japan is a nonprofit organization comprising professionals of multiple nationalities living in Japan. WaNavi Japan regularly runs earthquake preparation courses at various international schools, universities, embassies and corporate orientation events in Tokyo, Yokohama and surrounding areas. Because you don’t know where you will be when an earthquake occurs, prepare a Disaster Supplies Kit for your home, workplace, and car. Your family may not be together when disaster strikes, so it is important to know how you will contact one another, how you will get back together and what you will do in case of an emergency.
Teach responsible members of your family how to turn off the gas, electricity, and water at valves and main switches.
As noted by many of our readers, one of the key topics omitted from our article on the inevitability of economic collapse was the petrodollar system.
Unless you’ve been living in a cave for last few years, you know that something is deeply wrong with our world today. Preparing for natural disasters especially earthquake is important to save your life as well as property. Some people may think it a useless thing but emergency preparedness for earthquake can save you from many hassles during and after earthquake.
In order to avoid financial loss, you must store breakable stuff in lower and closed shelves. You must have an idea about places where you can stay safe, but away from buildings, electrical lines, and bridges. If you are outside home, then be sure to stay at an open place away from streetlights and buildings. Earthquakes are one of the most devastating natural disasters out there, and they affect hundreds of thousands of people all around the world each and every year.
If you live in an area of the world that is particularly prone to earthquakes (San Francisco perhaps) then I urge you to read on as I’m going to be sharing some essential tips for surviving an earthquake that you might not already know and could even save your life. A big part of surviving an earthquake is actually making sure that you are prepared for one.
Stock up on emergency supplies: You never know how bad an earthquake is going to be before it strikes to it makes sense to be prepared. Create a safe environment: Creating a safe environment will ensure that you minimise the dangers and damage caused when an earthquake strikes. The most important thing to consider when an earthquake strikes is your own safety and that of those around you.
Then you're gonna love my free PDF, 20 common survival items, 20 uncommon survival uses for each. Good article, I live about 40 minutes from the callapsed double deck highway in your fisrt pic.
My children are now 25 and 26 years old and they still tak about that day as we lost some friends in the lower deck of the highway that got smashed.
The disaster supplies you need for an earthquake are similar to the supplies you should have on hand for other natural disasters.

Intro: Having experienced the 1994 earthquake that rattled Northridge, California and its surrounding areas, I can attest to the need to prepare for an earthquake. If you have to go through an earthquake, though, the preparation you under go beforehand will help you to deal with the aftermath when it can take days or weeks for assistance to arrive. Warnings: Even with all your preparation, things could be bad enough that you won't be able to get to your stash. An earthquake is the sudden, rapid shaking of the earth, caused by the breaking and shifting of subterranean rock as it releases strain that has accumulated over a long time.
If recommended by your gas company, have an automatic gas shut-off valve installed that is triggered by strong vibrations.
Minimize your movements to a few steps to a nearby safe place and if you are indoors, stay there until the shaking has stopped and you are sure exiting is safe.
If there isn’t a table or desk near you, cover your face and head with your arms and crouch in an inside corner of the building.
Hold on and protect your head with a pillow, unless you are under a heavy light fixture that could fall.
The greatest danger exists directly outside buildings, at exits and alongside exterior walls. These secondary shockwaves are usually less violent than the main quake but can be strong enough to do additional damage to weakened structures and can occur in the first hours, days, weeks, or even months after the quake. Remember to help your neighbors who may require special assistance such as infants, the elderly and people with access and functional needs. Text SHELTER + your ZIP code to 43362 (4FEMA) to find the nearest shelter in your area (example: shelter 12345). Stay away unless your assistance has been specifically requested by police, fire, or relief organizations. If you smell gas or hear blowing or hissing noise, open a window and quickly leave the building.
If you see sparks or broken or frayed wires, or if you smell hot insulation, turn off the electricity at the main fuse box or circuit breaker. I hope we can all take a moment to remember those who have been affected by the earthquake, tsunami, and nuclear disaster and also support and help those still going through difficulties in any small way we can. If you're living in Japan or planning to move there at any time in the future, I recommend preparing yourself (and family, if applicable) as much as possible. In Japan planning starts early -- young children are educated about how important it is to stay safe. Yurekuru Call is an app available for iPhone and Android that sends you a warning if an earthquake might occur in your registered location, which is part of the nationwide early warning system. The Disaster Emergency Message Dial (171) is a voice message board for communication when a disaster such as an earthquake or volcanic eruption occurs and telephone traffic to the disaster-stricken area increases making it difficult to transmit calls.
The system prompts are all in Japanese, but if you follow the steps you can still use this valuable tool even if you don’t understand Japanese.
NHK television (Channel 1) is the best place to get fast, reliable, visual information on the location of an earthquake and whether a tsunami warning is in effect. It includes details of the epicenter of the quake, the magnitude and the impact in each prefecture using the Japanese shindo scale. The map shows the affected area and the table shows the expected arrival time and projected height of the tsunami. The Japan Meteorological Agency (JMA) website is bilingual and has lots of information about earthquakes, tsunami warnings and typhoons, among other useful information. If possible, rent an apartment or house built after 1981 when the stricter building codes were established. Choose a meeting place to reunite with your family and practice your home evacuation drill.
Stock up on supplies of essential food, medicine, drinking water and waste management tools. Pack an evacuation bag including cash, passports, essential medication, food, water and spare clothes for each member of your family. Investigate ways you can secure furniture in your apartment to prevent it from falling during an earthquake.
Satoko Oki (Earthquake Research Institute, Tokyo University), work tirelessly to research and analyze various disaster scenarios and how they may impact people and life-sustaining infrastructure (such as water and electricity) in order to advise local and national governments on their disaster risk management plans. This contains all of the critical words and phrases listed above, as well as a reminder about how to use 171, areas to record important phone numbers and passport numbers and a space to draw a map of your local area. We provide international residents and their families with critical information and support to live comfortably and confidently in Japan through various services including workshops, networking, navigation, research, and consulting. Plan places where your family will meet, both within and outside of your immediate neighborhood. Text SHELTER + your ZIP code to 43362 (4FEMA) to find the nearest shelter in your area (example: shelter 12345). Before you dismiss this as hype or paranoia, take a few minutes to review the facts outlined on this page.
Earthquakes can strike any place anytime without any warning, which is why you are always advised to be ready for any possible shock.
Do not place them on heights as if earthquake rattles the shelves, heavier stuff on them can pose serious problems. Hang them at least five to four feet away from your bed to ensure it would not fall on you if earthquake occurs. You should stock up on anything you could possibly need in preparation for an earthquake including bottled water, emergency supplies of food (tinned foods perhaps), first aid kit (this is essential for any home in an earthquake prone zone), flashlights and a radio if at all possible. You should make sure not to place heavy objects such as mirrors on the walls of your home and store other heavy objects safely away too. Of course, you might be indoors or outdoors when an earthquake strikes, so here are a few guidelines.
You should ideally take cover in a safe room (basement perhaps) or if this isn’t possible, take cover below a desk, table or similar item.
This is when the recovery stage starts and you should first of all check for any injuries that you, or anyone you are with might have sustained (this is where your first aid kit might come in handy). You can usually hear these or smell them so if you spot one, make sure to report it instantly and open any windows and doors in the house.
Damage of your property or your possessions should very much be your second priority and something to consider only once the earthquake is over.
This will also subscribe you to my newsletter so you stay up-to-date with everything: new articles, ebooks, products and more! That means you don’t have to live in California to prepare yourself for the possibility. Make sure shelves are tightly secured to the walls and place heavy objects on lower shelves.
Make sure all electrical and gas lines are secure and in good repair to reduce the chance of fire.

Assume a crawling position in one of these locations and cover your head and neck with your hands and arms. California is at very high risk of earthquakes so it is important to adequately prepare your workplace for this disaster.
Research has shown that most injuries occur when people inside buildings attempt to move to a different location inside the building or try to leave. Many of the 120 fatalities from the 1933 Long Beach earthquake occurred when people ran outside of buildings only to be killed by falling debris from collapsing walls. When local authorities issue a tsunami warning, assume that a series of dangerous waves is on the way. Turn off the gas at the outside main valve if you can and call the gas company from a neighbor’s home.
If you have to step in water to get to the fuse box or circuit breaker, call an electrician first for advice. Decisions you make about your family's healthcare are important and should be made in consultation with a competent medical professional.
Although my family has been going through a lot this past year, I feel it fades in comparison, and my mind sometimes goes back to that day and following weeks. They learn to hide under a table or cover their heads when the shaking starts or when they hear an earthquake early warning alarm.
The more you know about the information sources available to you and what information you need, the more likely you will be able to stay calm and make the best decisions about how to react. Many Japanese telephones have this function already built into the phone, so it’s worth asking your mobile company about this if you decide not to go for a smartphone.
By entering your landline phone number as a pin code, you can leave a message on the system where other family members who share the same landline number can listen to your message and record theirs as well.
Under the Broadcast Act, NHK (Japan Broadcasting Corporation) is obligated to broadcast early warning emergency reporting when natural disasters strike. The newer the better as a few amendments were made to the code in 2000 after analysis of the damage caused by the 1995 Kobe earthquake. This may be important if your home becomes unlivable or you need to access supplies, such as food or drinking water. If water supply is affected then you might need to store lots of poop until services are re-established! Ensure that you regularly change the clothes for the changing seasons and as the children grow. Detailed research is regularly carried out for scenario planning purposes (even more so since March 11), which highlights areas most at risk for damage from a tsunami, for example, and what the expected worst-case level of inundation from a tsunami would be in various locations. The local fire station usually co-plans these, ask about "bousai kunren" ???? (emergency drills). In addition to these, it is highly recommended that you get some MREs (Meals, Ready to Eat), freeze dried and dehydrated foods which are light, easy to transport and last up to 25 years.
Know your community’s warning systems and disaster plans, including evacuation routes. You cannot do certainly with magnitude of earthquake and its aftershocks, but you can do enough to prevent yourself from physical and financial loses. Get your food supplies, storage kits, living kits and other necessities ready in order to survive in emergency.
You should also consider having spare blankets or warm clothing in your home in case you are trapped too.
Any electrical appliances should be kept away from flammable substances too if possible, just to be safe.
You are trying to protect yourself from any falling debris so if possible, you should position yourself near and internal wall too.
Unplugging any appliances will help if there is a power cut too as they may be damaged when the power is turned back on. You and your family are left scrambling to find shelter and safety when the truth is you don't know where is a structure that won't break during the quake or for that matter, where there is a safe place.
If the water system is damaged and stores are closed or looted, you may not have access to any water. Toilet paper, tampons, sanitary napkins, diapers, deodorant, shampoo, soap, tooth paste and tooth brushes are all necessary items that you may find you miss after an earthquake.
Do not move seriously injured persons unless they are in immediate danger of further injury. Both website are dedicated to educating and informing people with articles on powerful and concealed information from around the world.
Both website are dedicated to educating and informing people with articles on powerful and concealed information from around the world. NHK is able to source information from the Japan Meteorological Agency’s national network of seismometers and deliver information about the quake almost instantly. Ask at your local ward office for copies of bilingual evacuation maps and shelter locations.
A quick trip with a Japanese speaker to Tokyu Hands or a home store should have you on the right track. A normally active person needs at least one gallon of water daily just for drinking however individual needs vary, depending on age, physical condition, activity, diet and climate.
These things require long term planning which is why you should start preparing your food storage and other supplies from now.
If it is badly damaged, you should get out and wait for a safety inspector to approve the building. If the earthquake occurs in a populated area, it may cause many deaths and injuries and extensive property damage.
Most earthquake-related casualties result from collapsing walls, flying glass, and falling objects. I have spent the last 36+ years researching Bible, History, Alternative Health, Secret Societies, Symbolism and many other topics that are not reported by mainstream media. Know where to get information, especially if you don't understand Japanese, so you can protect yourself (and your family).
If you have any problems finding this information, feel free to contact WaNavi Japan for further assistance.
If you live in Tokyo, you can join WaNavi Japan on one of our regular escorted shopping tours. Make sure you have a sling, splints, Hydrogen Peroxide, cotton balls, band-aids, gauze with pads, tape, Neosporin, a thermometer and disposable ice packs.

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