Remember that Earthquakes can happen in most of the countries, anytime, without warning. Reducing hazards and knowing what to do before, during and after can make a big difference in your life. So BE PREPARED.
Earthquake occurs when shaking and vibration at the surface of the earth resulting from underground movement along a fault plane of from volcanic activity
There are basically three types of earthquake:
1. Volcanic: Occurs, when any volcano abrupt in the mountainous region.
2. Tectonic: Occurs, when giant tectonic plates under ground pushes or shift.
3. Artificial: Occurs, when any country test their missiles or nuclear bombs within the country.
Following are the tips for every one to pre planned before Earthquakes occur.
· For Practice and pre planning, choose a safe place in every room – under a strong table, chair, bed or desk anywhere, where you are sure that nothing can fall on you. Drop yourself under a powerful desk or table, hold on firmly, and do remember to protect your eyes and other sensitive parts of your body by pressing your face against your arm. If there’s no table, bed chair or desk nearby, sit on the floor against an interior wall away from windows, bookcases, or tall furniture that could fall on you. Remember that in the recent Earthquake in Pakistan, most of the people have lost their hands, legs or eyes because of lack of safety planning.
· Prepare an emergency supplies kit for your family including few mineral water bottles and non-perishable food most likely dry fruits or canned food, as well as a manual can opener, paper plates, cups, first-aid kit with essential medications, sleeping bags, flashlight and battery-operated radio with extra batteries. Keep this Kit always by your bedside.
· Get training in how to use a fire extinguisher. Learn the value of dignity of work. Don’t be shy as this practical training would be of worth for you in future. First Aid training could also be getting from Guides, Scouts or any NGO’s in Pakistan, which provide such trainings like Aga Khan Focus Humanitarian Assistance, Pakistan.
· If possible, buy a Fire Extinguisher for your Flat for future need.
· Make a Diary and keep the important phone numbers of your family members in it. Keep this diary in your Wallet / Pocket or Purse.
· Bolt tall furniture Cabinets, Geyser and all the heavy objects to wall studs and install strong handle on cupboards.
· Try to be alert all the time by listening to latest updates on your TV channels/ Radio.
· Develop an earthquake safety action plan for your family identifying places that can provide the highest amount of protection during an earthquake as well as an escape route and off-premises meeting place.
· Teach family members how to cut off water, gas and electricity within the house.
· Secure heavy objects (e.g. television, stereos, computers) with brackets or safety straps.
· Use light and small mirrors in your room.
· Secure ceiling lights fans using safety cables.
· Apply safety film to windows and glass doors.
· Use Plastic, or Steel Utensils for eating or cooking purpose, instead of glassware. If you want to use it, keep your glassware inside a cabinet after every use.
· Install handle on kitchen cabinet doors to prevent items from falling.
When the shaking begins:
· Switch off your electricity and gas lines at once.
· If you are INDOOR, Drop under heavy chair, bed, furniture, table etc. Stay away from the glass windows and protect your body using your arm. If you’re in the KITCHEN, move away from the refrigerator, stove, and cabinets. If you’re in a WHEELCHAIR, stay in it. Move to cover, if possible, lock your wheels, and protect your head with your arms. If you are in BED, hold on and stay there, protecting your head with a pillow. Sit or stay close to the floor and hold on to furniture legs for balance, if possible.
· Stay away from doorways, violent motion could cause the doors to slam against your body, crush your fingers or inflict other serious injuries.
· Do not run outside, as it may have seen that most of the death occurs during earthquake jolts due to running outside without considering the negative result. Remember that earthquake could take all lives, could demolish all building in seconds. Please don’t be so frustrated. Relax and stay in door until the shaking stops.
· If you’re OUTDOOR, move to a clear area away from trees, signs, buildings, electrical wires, and poles. Please do not stop on or under bridges too. If you’re on a SIDEWALK NEAR BUILDINGS, bend into a doorway to protect yourself from falling bricks, glass, plaster, and other debris. If you’re DRIVING, pull over to the side of the road and stop. Stay inside the vehicle until the shaking is over. If you’re in a CROWDED STORE OR STADIUM OR THEATER, do not rush for exits. Move away from display shelves containing objects that could fall. Protect your head with your arms while sitting on the ground or under any heavy furniture.
What to do after the shaking stops
· Check yourself for injuries. Protect yourself from further danger by putting on long pants, a long-sleeved shirt, sturdy shoes, and work gloves. Give first aid for serious injuries.
· Look for and extinguish small fires. Eliminate fire hazards.
· If you had not turned off the gas when the jolts started, if you smell a gas or it’s leaking now, turned off the gas instantly.
· Be alert for Aftershocks. Each time you feel one; just drop yourself under any heavy furniture.
· Pay attention to damaged utilities. Avoid loose or dangling electric power lines and report all gas and electrical problems to the proper authorities and turned off any damaged utilities.
· Use flashlights instead of candles or lanterns.radio strap
· Wear protective shoes. Have your shoes and your Kit by your bed in case the earthquake happens in the middle of the night again.
· Inspect your home for damage. Get everyone out if your home is unsafe.
· If your building is sound, stay inside and listen for radio, or reliable news channel like ARY ONE, CNN, BBC, FM 101 etc.