On Oct. 17 at 10:17 a.m., communities in seven states and the District of Columbia will take part in the second annual Great SouthEast ShakeOut.
During the multi-state earthquake drill, millions of people simultaneously practice the recommended response to earthquake shaking, or drop, cover and hold on: DROP to the ground, take COVER - get under a sturdy desk or table, or cover your head/neck with your arms and HOLD ON until the shaking stops.
The ShakeOut is designed to help individuals and communities get ready for earthquakes, practice how to protect themselves and prevent disasters from becoming catastrophes. States participating in the ShakeOut include Delaware, Georgia, Maryland, North Carolina, South Carolina, Virginia and West Virginia, as well as the District of Columbia.
Following the second anniversary of the damaging August 23, 2011 M5.9 Mineral, Virginia earthquake and FEMA's National Preparedness Month, Great ShakeOut drills are scheduled nationwide in more than 43 states and territories. At least 15 million people are expected to participate October 17.
During the self-led ShakeOut drill, participants can perform a variety of disaster safety activities, including practicing drop, cover, and hold on, testing emergency plans or procedures, updating disaster supply kits and securing items that may fall or cause injury during an earthquake.
The Great SouthEast ShakeOut is coordinated by the Central U.S. Earthquake Consortium and its member and associate states, along with the Federal Emergency Management Agency, the U.S. Geological Survey and dozens of other partners. The program's goal is to engage participants to take steps to become better prepared for earthquakes and other disasters.
The public is encouraged to participate in this free drill. Those taking part nationwide include individuals, schools, businesses and local and state government agencies. Those interested may visit www.shakeout.org/southeast to register to participate. Available online resources include drill manuals, audio and video drill broadcasts and earthquake scenarios.