Wherever you are when an earthquake starts, take cover immediately. Move a few steps to a nearby safe place if need be. Stay there until the shaking stops.
If you are indoors: “DROP, COVER, HOLD ON”
- Stay inside.
- Drop under heavy furniture such as a table, desk, bed or any solid furniture.
- Cover your head and torso to prevent being hit by falling objects.
- Hold onto the object that you are under so that you remain covered.
- If you can’t get under something strong, or if you are in a hallway, flatten yourself or crouch against an interior wall.
- If you are in a shopping mall, go into the nearest store.
- Stay away from windows, and shelves with heavy objects.
- If you are at school, get under a desk or table and hold on. Face away from windows.
- If you are in a wheelchair, lock the wheels and protect the back of your head and neck.
If you are outdoors
- Stay outside.
- Go to an open area away from buildings.
- If you are in a crowded public place, take cover where you won’t be trampled.
If you are in a vehicle
- Pull over to a safe place where you are not blocking the road. Keep roads clear for rescue and emergency vehicles.
- Avoid bridges, overpasses, underpasses, buildings or anything that could collapse.
- Stop the car and stay inside.
- Listen to your car radio for instructions from emergency officials.
- Do not attempt to get out of your car if downed power lines are across it. Wait to be rescued.
- Place a HELP sign in your window if you need assistance.
- If you are on a bus, stay in your seat until the bus stops. Take cover in a protected place. If you can’t take cover, sit in a crouched position and protect your head from falling debris.
AVOID the following in an earthquake
- Doorways. Doors may slam shut and cause injuries.
- Windows, bookcases, tall furniture and light fixtures. You could be hurt by shattered glass or heavy objects.
- Elevators. If you are in an elevator during an earthquake, hit the button for every floor and get out as soon as you can.
- Downed power lines – stay at least 10 metres away to avoid injury.
- Coastline. Earthquakes can trigger large ocean waves called tsunamis.