Shake, Rattle and Roll: Are you prepared?

Emergency KitBy Katie S.

Earthquakes are the most dangerous and likely natural disaster to happen here in Southern California and in Mexico. As you probably know, a major earthquake occurred in central Mexico several weeks ago, and scientists are now warning Los Angeles residents that the nearby San Andreas fault seems overdue for a major quake.

The deadly earthquake that shook Mexico on September 19, 2017 was a 7.1 quake that occurred on a fault within the Cocos plate. The area it struck was built upon an ancient dry lake bed, which quivered like jello during the earthquake, increasing the vibration of the earthquake.

The day the earthquake hit Mexico was the 32nd anniversary of an earthquake that hit Mexico city in 1985, which had a death toll of around 10,000 people. To commemorate the deadly quake, a national earthquake drill was held on the anniversary, at around 11:00 am, two hours before the recent 7.1 magnitude earthquake struck.

The drill was fortunate, and the timing of the quake was surprising, but still, the death toll of this recent earthquake now stands at about three hundred and forty-five. Two hundred and fourteen of these deaths came from Mexico City.

Mexico is now recovering, and seismologists predict a “Big One” is overdue to hit Southern California. Scientists cannot yet forecast earthquakes with any precision, but are warning residents to be prepared for a powerful earthquake sometime in the near future.

The “Big One” is an earthquake predicted by scientists that will possibly have a magnitude of 8.0 or greater. It will certainly be deadly and will cause over one hundred billion dollars in damage but we can be prepared. 

Everyone who lives in California should be prepared for the big, powerful earthquakes. But they definitely don’t happen every day, nor every year. Many are so small you can’t even feel them. But just in case a monster earthquake does hit Southern California, every family should be equipped with an earthquake kit.

In your earthquake kit, you should have many gallons of water, non-perishable food, a working flashlight, a dust mask, a portable radio, a first aid kit, a whistle to alert help, medications, emergency cash and whatever else you feel your family might need. 

Earthquakes are common in California. Don’t be caught unprepared! Talk to your family about making your emergency earthquake kit today.

Editor’s Note:  In order to prepare for earthquakes at school, drills are held. On October 10:19AM, a school-wide earthquake drill was held.   An “earthquake” was announced.  Students got under their desks and when the “all clear” single was given, students were escorted to the field and lined up in their classes.  Roll was taken and turned in so students could be accounted for and teams of adults were set out to find students who were not on the field.

RMS drills are used for earthquakes, lockdowns, and fires.  Please take these drills seriously when they are called. They can save your life!

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