(Source FEMA) -- In less than two days, on October 18, 2012 at 10:18 a.m. EDT, over one million people are expected to take part in the first ever Great SouthEast ShakeOut. The ShakeOut is a regional earthquake drill in which participants simultaneously practice the recommended action during an earthquake. This action is known as “Drop, Cover, and Hold On”, which means:
DROP to the ground
Take COVER by getting under a sturdy desk or table, and
HOLD-ON to it until the shaking stops
The states of Georgia, South Carolina, North Carolina, Virginia, Maryland, and the District of Columbia are encouraging their schools, businesses, organizations, government agencies, communities, and households to participate in this historic event. The event is free and open to the public, and teaches easy to do, yet potentially life-saving information.
The ShakeOut comes on the heels of the one year anniversary of the August 23, 2011 M5.9 Mineral, Virginia earthquake. Last year’s earthquake caused significant damage in Louisa County, Virginia, and millions of dollars in damages in Washington, D.C.
The ShakeOut is a dedicated time where individuals and communities focus on disaster safety and preparedness activities. Participants in the ShakeOut are encouraged to take actions to become better prepared for earthquakes and other disasters; this includes securing heavy items to prevent them from causing injuries during an earthquake, creating an emergency plan or updating emergency supply kits, and talking with their families and neighbors about how they might respond to an emergency.
There are many ways for individuals, businesses, schools, faith-based organizations, community groups, scouts, and others to participate in the ShakeOut, to get prepared for earthquakes, and to share activities with others. Although it is only days away, it’s not too late to register and participate. For more information on the ShakeOut or how to participate in the drill, visit www.shakeout.org.
FEMA’s mission is to support our citizens and first responders to ensure that as a nation we work together to build, sustain, and improve our capability to prepare for, protect against, respond to, recover from, and mitigate all hazards. FEMA Region III’s jurisdiction includes Delaware, the District of Columbia, Maryland, Pennsylvania, Virginia and West Virginia. Stay informed of FEMA’s activities online: videos and podcasts are available at http://www.fema.gov/medialibrary and www.youtube.com/fema. Follow us on Twitter at www.twitter.com/femaregion3.