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Drop, Cover, And Hold On: The Great Oregon ShakeOut

Lane Community College
Students at Lane Community College take part in the 2016 Great Oregon ShakeOut earthquake drill by taking cover under a table.

If the Cascadia earthquake happened right now, would you know what to do? That’s the question emergency preparedness planners want you to ask yourself in advance of Thursday's Great Oregon ShakeOut.

The event is part of a worldwide effort to get people thinking about what to do during an earthquake. Althea Rizzo is a Geologic Hazards Program Coordinator with the Oregon Office of Emergency Management. She says we’ve had 41 large temblors in the last 10,000 years, and adds “there’s no way to predict when we’re going to have the next one, we just know that eventually mother nature is going to shake us up and we will need to take some steps to get prepared for that.”

The best thing you can do if you feel the earth start to tremble is to drop on to your hands and knees, preferably under a sturdy table or desk, cover your head and neck with one arm and hand, and hold on until the shaking stops.

Rizzo says “the big one” known as Cascadia, is hard to predict, but everyone should be prepared. She tells KLCC, “When the ground starts shaking, that’s not the time to pull out your emergency plan and make sure that you’ve got everything set up, so the Great Oregon ShakeOut is the perfect time for all Oregonians to be talking and thinking and preparing for Cascadia.”

Wherever you are on Thursday morning at 10:18am, you should imagine a temblor, drop, cover, and hold on. More than 500,000 Oregonians, including 300,000 Oregon students have registered to take part.

Oregon Gov. Kate Brown is encouraging participants and has declared Thursday, October 18, 2018 as "Great Oregon ShakeOut Day." You can register at The Great Oregon ShakeOut.

Love Cross joined KLCC in 2017. She began her public radio career as a graduate student, serving as Morning Edition Host for Boise State Public Radio in the late 1990s. She earned her undergraduate degree in Rhetoric and Communication from University of California at Davis, and her Master’s Degree from Boise State University. In addition to her work in public radio, Love teaches college-level courses in Communication and Public Speaking.
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