Emergency preparedness is often on the minds and hearts of people who live in earthquake prone areas. Every year, 70 to 75 damaging earthquakes occur throughout the world. So, what can we learn from this statistic, and the recent earthquakes in Japan and New Zealand?
Optimism is appropriate for low risk situations, but when the cost of failure is high, it can be disastrous. In potentially catastrophic or high risk situations, Optimal Thinking (superlative realism) is best used for emergency preparedness to minimize unnecessary fear, and provide the best strategy for success.
An earthquake is experienced as a sudden, rapid shaking of the earth and is caused by the breaking and shifting of rock beneath the earth’s surface. Earthquakes strike without warning and are violent. Earthquake preparedness to best deal with potential hazards can minimize injuries, property damage, and most importantly, loss of life. Keep in mind, unsecured heavy objects toppling over are the primary cause of injury and death. Maintaining cracks in ceilings and foundations, anchoring overhead fixtures and breakables, and adhering to local seismic building standards are critical.
After an earthquake, many people are displaced permanently or temporarily. Of those whose homes remain intact, many are temporarily without water, electricity and phone service.
Here are guidelines to observe before, during and after an earthquake to provide your best defense against an earthquake in your area: