How to Survive an Earthquake

Sometimes I feel like I’m living on the edge of a fault-line.

1989 San Francisco Earthquake

If you live in an earthquake zone, somewhere on the ring of fire, then sooner or later  where you live is going to experience a big one.  One thing that you should bear in mind if you suffer a serious earthquake ~ there will be dangerous aftershocks.  And nobody can predict when or where an earthquake will strike.

To have the best chance of surviving an earthquake, you should;

  • Have a plan, write it down, keep it safe.
  • Be somewhere else at the time.
  • Always keep a half-tank of gas in your car ~ you may need to get out of town in a hurry.
  • Keep an earthquake survival kit in the trunk of your car.
  • Have some basic tools in the trunk of your car, including a hatchet, fire extinguisher, and high powered flashlight.  These should be in the trunk of your car anyway, along with a space blanket and first-aid kit.
  • Keep your hiking boots and 2 pairs of clean socks in the trunk of your car.
  • Have plenty of bottled water at home, and always keep some in your car.
  • Stay away from buildings, when it’s safe to get outside, find an open space to be even safer from the aftershocks.
  • Stay away from windows, street lights, utility cables, and overpasses.
  • If you are indoors, do not use an elevator.  Stand in a doorway, the door-frame might just protect you.  At worst get under a table.  Do not try to leave the building until the quake stops.
  • If you are indoors, stay away from anything tall, such as cupboards, wardrobes, and filing cabinets.  Get away from anything hanging from the ceiling or walls.

The snag is, if you follow this advice the trunk of your car is always going to be full of survival equipment, making it untidy and not much use for collecting groceries from the supermarket.  Also, real survival would mean you buying a 4X4 off road vehicle, like a Land Rover or Jeep instead / as well as whatever car you drive now.  And you would keep a tent and other camping things in your 4X4.

And not much of the above matters one jot if your car is in a garage, which collapses on it during a big earthquake.

Anyway, survival is a state of mindStaying alive during and after a disaster is more about psychology and physiology than it is about having a ton of survival gear.  Perhaps the best thing to do is go in an appropriate course at a survival school instead of a beach vacation next year.


jack collier


Land Rover, the best 4X4 by far

4 responses

  1. One of the most important modern things to NOT do is Tweet, text, post on FB, or otherwise make the event into a social media thing until you are safe from debris. Don’t be dumb and if you are, face the consequences.
    I always have a flash where I can reach out and grab it. I used to have a kit in the car when the boys were little. Getting stranded from the house during flood season was common! However, quakes are just things that happen up here. Mum’s got a quake card on the fridge. ‘Stay indoors away from windows and under a heavy table is top on the list.’ We were taught that in school, too. No open flames (scary if one has a gas line!) is next. ‘If in a moving car, you stop and stay in the car.’ You never know when the road is going to crumble. But, if you are in a car, you often don’t know if there is a quake or not.
    You have good points, my friend!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks Kris.
      Put a kit back in the car.
      Hugs ❤

      Liked by 1 person

  2. I don’t have a hatchet. But I am a little prepared.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Good for you, buy an axe. ❤ 😉

      Liked by 1 person

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