By Lori Bashian
Mayor Pro Tem Dante Acosta joined “Santa Clarita Sheriff’s Talk” on KHTS AM-1220 recently, providing Santa Clarita residents tips on what to do when an earthquake hits and how to prepare beforehand.
“The goal is to in california to develop a culture of earthquake readiness and resiliency. We want to make sure we all recognize the need. “Earthquakes are a daily threat in California and we need to make appropriate steps to be ready.,”
According to Acosta when an earthquake strikes people tend to have a “flight reaction” but the best thing to do is to move as little as possible and find a safe place to hide.
“We want to make sure people know that they only want to move as far as necessary to reach a safe place, get under a sturdy desk or a table and hold on,” he explained. “That’s what drop cover and hold on is to remind people to do. Understand that you are going to move around with the shaking and just sit still until the ground stops.”
A common belief held by most living in Southern California is that standing under a doorway is one of the safest places to be during an earthquake, but Acosta noted that is not always the case.
“A lot of people think a doorway is the safest place but sometimes the doors, especially if they are heavy doors, could be swinging so we have to be careful of that,” said Acosta.
Acosta wanted to make it clear that running outside during an earthquake is not a safe idea but also gave advice for those who were already outside once the shaking started.
“If you are outdoors you also want to make sure that you stay away from powerlines and buildings and trees. The recommendation is to actually drop to the ground so that you do not trip and fall over (anything),” said Acosta. “Often times with our modern buildings you are probably safest indoors especially if you are underneath a sturdy desk. Never run outside of a building while its shaking!”
Besides knowing what to do when an earthquake hits it is also beneficial to learn how to prepare for what might happen afterwards and ensuring your home is earthquake proof.
“We want to make sure that you look for hazards in your home, make sure you secure things in your home,” he explained. “Also create a family disaster preparedness plan. Make sure you have things you are going to need, create or update your emergency supply kit (and) make sure you have water and food for everybody for three to five days.”