What to Do Before, During, and After an Earthquake: Earthquakes are among the most unpredictable and potentially destructive natural disasters that can occur anytime, without warning. It is essential for individuals to be prepared for this type of emergency and to know what to do before, during, and after an earthquake to minimise the risk of harm.
In this blog, we will discuss the importance of being prepared for earthquakes and having an emergency action plan in place.
Stay Safe During An Earthquake
An earthquake is a natural phenomenon caused by the movement of tectonic plates in the Earth’s crust. When two plates grind against each other, tremendous pressure builds up, causing the ground to shake. Earthquakes can range from minor, barely noticeable tremors to devastating disasters that cause widespread damage and loss of life.
In Australia, earthquakes are relatively infrequent but can still have a significant impact. According to the Geological Survey of Australia, the country experiences an average of 100 earthquakes per year, with the majority being too small to be felt by people.
However, significant earthquakes have occurred in Australia in the past, including the 1989 Newcastle earthquake, which claimed the lives of 13 people and caused widespread damage to properties and infrastructures.
Thus, knowing first aid and safety precautions before, during, and after an earthquake cannot be overstated. Earthquakes can happen anytime and without warning, making it essential for individuals to be prepared for this type of emergency.
Survival & Safety Tips In An Earthquake (Before, During, After)
Here is a guide on what to do before, during, and after an earthquake.
Before An Earthquake
Identify safe places in your home and workplace: Safe places during an earthquake include under a desk, table or against an interior wall. Find the nearest safe places to your location in case of an earthquake.
- Create a disaster plan: Make a plan with your family or coworkers on what to do in case of an earthquake. This includes how to evacuate the building, how to communicate with each other, and where to meet after the earthquake.
- Prepare an emergency supply kit: Keep a kit in your home and workplace that includes water, food, first aid supplies, flashlights, and extra batteries.
- Secure heavy objects: Secure items such as large appliances, heavy furniture, and large paintings and sculptures to the walls or floors to prevent them from falling during an earthquake.
- Learn first aid: Knowing basic first aid can be a lifesaver in the event of an injury during an earthquake. Take a course or learn online.
During An Earthquake
- Stay calm: Try to remain calm and avoid panicking. This will help you think clearly and make the best decisions for your safety.
- Drop, Cover, and Hold On: This safety technique is recommended by experts during an earthquake. The technique involves the following steps:
- Drop: Quickly drop down to the ground.
- Cover: Cover under a sturdy desk, table, or bench or against an interior wall.
- Hold On: Hold on to the furniture or the wall to protect yourself from falling debris. If you’re in bed, stay there and cover your head with a pillow.
- Stay away from windows: Glass from windows can shatter and cause injury. Stay away from windows, mirrors, and anything that can fall and cause harm.
- Do not evacuate the building immediately: If you’re inside, stay inside and protect yourself. Wait to evacuate the building until the shaking stops, and it is safe to do so.
- Protect yourself: If you’re in a hallway, crouch down and protect your head and neck with your arms. Stay low and protect yourself if you’re in a crowded public place.
- Be aware of falling objects: Look out for falling objects, such as light fixtures, bookshelves, and cabinets, and take cover if necessary.
- Help others: If you’re able to do so, help others who may need assistance, such as people with mobility issues or children.
After An Earthquake
- Check for injuries: Here’s how to check for injuries after an earthquake:
- Assess yourself: Check for any cuts, bruises, or broken bones. If you have a serious injury, seek medical attention immediately.
- Check others: Check on others and ask if they need help. Attend to any injuries and provide first aid if necessary.
- Look for signs of shock: Check for signs of shock, such as pale skin, cold and clammy skin, rapid pulse, or shallow breathing. If someone is in shock, lay them down and keep them warm.
- Report injuries: Report any injuries to the authorities, such as the police or fire department, or call for medical assistance if necessary.
- Evacuate the building (if necessary): If the building is damaged or if it is not safe to stay inside, evacuate the building and go to an open area.
- Avoid damaged areas: Do not enter damaged buildings or areas that may be unsafe.
- Be aware of aftershocks: Aftershocks are smaller earthquakes that can occur after a larger earthquake. Be aware of them and take cover if necessary.
- Report damage: Report any damages to the appropriate authorities, including the police, fire department, and utility companies.
- Follow the disaster plan: Follow your disaster plan and communicate with your family or coworkers to ensure everyone is safe.
By following these tips before, during, and after an earthquake, you can help ensure their safety and respond effectively to any injuries or damages.
Learn First Aid
Earthquakes can have a devastating impact, and it is crucial for individuals to be prepared and informed about first aid and safety precautions. By being proactive and taking steps to prepare for this type of emergency, individuals can help protect themselves and their communities during an earthquake.
In light of the importance of being prepared for an earthquake, it is highly recommended that individuals take a first aid course and familiarize themselves with safety precautions before, during, and after an earthquake.
By taking a first aid course , individuals can learn the necessary skills and knowledge to provide medical assistance in the event of an earthquake or other emergency. A comprehensive first aid course will cover everything from basic first aid techniques, such as CPR and wound care, to more advanced skills, such as treating broken bones and managing shock.
With the right training and knowledge, individuals can be better equipped to respond to an emergency and help keep themselves and others safe during this natural disaster.
Book a first aid course today. Check out First Aid Courses Darwin for upcoming courses near you.