FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:
Memphis, TN — Registration is now open for the third annual Great Central U.S. ShakeOut. The ShakeOut is a regional safety drill in which millions of people practice the recommended action during earthquake shaking. The next one is scheduled for February 7, 2013 at 10:15a.m. The 2012 ShakeOut in February 2012 drew nearly 2.5 million participants, and provided communities valuable time to practice simple, yet potentially lifesaving, activities. In the event of an earthquake, one should:
- Drop to the Ground
- Take Cover under a sturdy table or desk if possible, and protect your head and neck
- Hold On until the shaking stops
Scientists estimate that there is a 20-40 percent probability of a damaging earthquake occurring in the mid-west within a 50 year window. A large earthquake could have major impacts on national transportation, communication, utility, and financial systems. August 23, 2012 marked the one year anniversary of the M5.8 earthquake that was felt along the entire eastern seaboard and caused more than$150-200 million in damages in Virginia and the District of Columbia. That earthquake was felt by an estimated 100 million people and proved that the central and eastern U.S. are not immune to damaging earthquakes.
The ShakeOut is unique because it allows all individuals and communities a dedicated time to focus on disaster safety and preparedness activities. Although the primary activity of the ShakeOut is based upon a drill that is similar to a fire or tornado drill, participants are encouraged to take other actions to become better prepared for emergencies. 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.
This event is organized by the Central United States Earthquake Consortium (CUSEC – www.cusec.org ) and our Members States of Alabama, Arkansas, Kentucky, Illinois, Indiana, Mississippi, Missouri, and Tennessee, and hundreds of local, state, federal and volunteer partners. Also, several CUSEC Associate Member States are participating in ShakeOut activities in October 2012. Georgia, North Carolina, South Carolina and Virginia are joining Maryland and the District of Columbia in the first ever Great SouthEast ShakeOut, also coordinated by CUSEC, on October 18, 2012. These states join ShakeOut drills involving nearly 10.5 million people in Alaska, Arizona, California, Idaho, Nevada, Oregon, Washington, Guam, Puerto Rico, British Columbia, and other countries around the world, in the largest safety drill ever held.
Interested citizens, schools, communities, businesses, etc. are encouraged to visit the ShakeOut website to pledge their participation in the drill, which is free and open to the public. Once registered, participants receive regular updates leading up to the ShakeOut, including information on earthquake and disaster safety. Also, the ShakeOut website has many resources are available for participants to use to plan their drills including drill manuals, videos, audio drill broadcasts, earthquake scenarios, and more.
To register, or for more information about the ShakeOut, visit www.shakeout.org/centralus