The Illinois Emergency Management Agency is asking residents to develop emergency plans in the wake of southern California’s 7.1 magnitude earthquake.
According to the IEMA, California residents continue to experience significantly powerful aftershocks — and records indicate Illinois has been rocked by some of the largest earthquakes ever measured in North American history.
Illinois is flanked on its western and eastern borders by two active seismic zones: the New Madrid Seismic Zone and the Wabash Valley Seismic Zone.
The IEMA news release says “an earthquake similar to what was recently experienced in California could have devastating effects” on our state.
“Creating an environment of education, awareness and preparedness will save lives in Illinois,” said Alicia Tate-Nadeau, Acting Director of the Illinois Emergency Management Agency. “While we cannot predict when the next major quake will occur, we can help people learn how to protect themselves and reduce damage to their homes.”
Believe it or not, learning how to “Drop, Cover and Hold On” can help people prevent injury during an earthquake, the IEMA says.
The phrase reminds people to drop down to the floor, take cover under a sturdy desk, table or other furniture, and hold on to that object and be prepared to move with it until the shaking ends. Most casualties result from falling objects and debris caused by the earth shaking.
There are several steps people can take to help prevent injuries and property damage at home, including:
• Strapping water heaters and large appliances to wall studs
• Anchoring overhead light fixtures
• Fastening shelves to wall studs and securing cabinet doors with latches
• Strapping TVs, computers and other heavy equipment to prevent tipping
• Learning how to shut off gas, water and electricity in case the lines are damaged
Each year the Illinois Emergency Management Agency leads an initiative to register homes, businesses, schools and organizations in the world’s largest earthquake drill.
This year’s earthquake drill will take place at 10:17 a.m. Thursday, Oct. 17.
The IMEA says it’s never too early to register your participation in this potentially life-saving event. Register at www.shakeout.org.
Learn more about how you can prepare your home, business and family for an earthquake at www.Ready.Illinois.gov. There, you will find preparedness and mitigation tutorial videos that will walk residents and business owners through the process of preparing your home, family and community for this natural disaster.
SOURCE: IMEA news release
Earthquakes in Illinois
According to the Illinois State Geological Survey, Kane County was hit with a 5.1 magnitude earthquake back in 1909.
Wabash County in Illinois recorded a 5.4 level earthquake in 2008.
A seismic event took place as recently as 2015.
IEMA Facebook Post
What NOT To Do During an Earthquake
DO NOT get in a doorway! An early earthquake photo is a collapsed adobe home with the door frame as the only standing part. From this came our belief that a doorway is the safest place to be during an earthquake. In modern houses and buildings, doorways are no safer, and they do not protect you from flying or falling objects. Get under a table instead!
DO NOT run outside! Trying to run in an earthquake is dangerous, as the ground is moving and you can easily fall or be injured by debris or glass. Running outside is especially dangerous, as glass, bricks, or other building components may be falling. You are much safer to stay inside and get under a table.
DO NOT believe the so-called “triangle of life”! In recent years, an e-mail has circulated which recommends potentially life threatening actions, and the source has been discredited by leading experts. Read this report to learn more.