What to do
- Stay where you are until the shaking stops. Do not run outside. Do not get in a doorway as this does not provide protection from falling or flying objects, and you may not be able to remain standing.
- Drop down onto your hands and knees so the earthquake doesn’t knock you down. Drop to the ground (before the earthquake drops you!)
- Cover your head and neck with your arms to protect yourself from falling debris.
- Hold on to any sturdy covering so you can move with it until the shaking stops. Stay where you are until the shaking stops.
- If getting safely to the floor to take cover won’t be possible:
- Identify an inside corner of the room away from windows and objects that could fall on you. The Earthquake Country Alliance advises getting as low as possible to the floor. People who use wheelchairs or other mobility devices should lock their wheels and remain seated until the shaking stops. Protect your head and neck with your arms, a pillow, a book, or whatever is available.
- If you are in bed when you feel the shaking:
- Stay there and cover your head and neck with a pillow. At night, hazards and debris are difficult to see and avoid; attempts to move in the dark result in more injuries than remaining in bed.
- If you are outside when you feel the shaking:
- Move away from buildings, streetlights, and utility wires.
- Once in the open, “Drop, Cover, and Hold On.”
- Stay there until the shaking stops. This might not be possible in a city, so you may need to duck inside a building to avoid falling debris.
- If you are in a moving vehicle when you feel the shaking:
- Stop as quickly and safely as possible and stay in the vehicle.
- Avoid stopping near or under buildings, trees, overpasses, and utility wires.
- Proceed cautiously once the earthquake has stopped. Avoid roads, bridges, or ramps that the earthquake may have damaged.