Are you prepared for a major earthquake? What will you do when one occurs? While the potential earthquake hazards you may experience depend upon your location, everywhere in California is considered at high risk compared to the rest of the country. There are a multitude of reasons you may or may not have prepared yourself, your home, or business for the occurrence of an earthquake. But you need to take the time to do it now.
The Monterey Park Fire Department provides the following information to inform the general public of what to do before, during,and after an earthquake. Earthquakes strike suddenly, violently and without warning. Identifying potential hazards ahead of time and advance planning can reduce the dangers of serious injury or loss of life from an earthquake.
Checking Utilities in Damaged Homes
- Check for gas leaks - If you smell gas or hear blowing or hissing noises, open a window and quickly leave the building. Turn off the gas at the outside main valve if you can and call the gas company from a neighbor's home. If you turn off the gas for any reason, it must be turned back on by a professional.
- Look for electrical system damage - 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. If you have to step in water to get to the fuse box or circuit breaker, call an electrician first for advice.
- Check for sewage and water lines damage - If you suspect sewage lines are damaged, avoid using the toilets and call a plumber. If water pipes are damaged, contact the water company and avoid using water from the tap. You can obtain safe water by melting ice cubes.