Chief Michael L. Smith
Emergency Management Director
10 Loring Drive, Framingham, MA 01702
Phone: 508-620-4942, Fax: 508-620-4946
Earthquakes strike suddenly, violently and without warning. Identifying potential hazards ahead of time and advance planning can reduce the dangers of serious injury or loss of life from an earthquake.
Check for hazards in the home.
Identify safe places in each room.
Locate safe places outdoors.
Make sure all family members know how to respond after an earthquake.
Teach children how and when to call 9-1-1, police, or fire department and which radio station to tune to for emergency information.
Contact your local emergency management office or American Red Cross chapter for more information on earthquakes.
Have disaster supplies on hand.
Develop an emergency communication plan.
Ask an out-of-state relative or friend to serve as the "family contact." After a disaster, it's often easier to call long distance. Make sure everyone in the family knows the name, address, and phone number of the contact person.
If in a moving vehicle:
Pets after an Earthquake
Be prepared for aftershocks.
Help injured or trapped persons.
Listen to a battery-operated radio or television for the latest emergency information.
Remember to help your neighbors who may require special assistance--infants, the elderly, and people with disabilities.
Stay out of damaged buildings. Return home only when authorities say it is safe.
INSPECTING UTILITIES IN A DAMAGED HOME
Check for gas leaks--If you smell gas or hear blowing or hissing noise, open a window and quickly leave the building. Turn off the gas at the outside main valve if you can and call the gas company from a neighbor's home. If you turn off the gas for any reason, it must be turned back on by a professional.
Look for electrical system damage--If you see sparks or broken or frayed wires, or if you smell hot insulation, turn off the electricity at the main fuse box or circuit breaker. If you have to step in water to get to the fuse box or circuit breaker, call an electrician first for advice.
Check for sewage and water lines damage--If you suspect sewage lines are damaged, avoid using the toilets and call a plumber. If water pipes are damaged, contact the water company and avoid using water from the tap. You can obtain safe water by melting ice cubes.
MITIGATION - Mitigation includes any activities that prevent an emergency, reduce the chance of an emergency happening, or lessen the damaging effects of unavoidable emergencies. Investing in preventive mitigation steps now such as repairing deep plaster cracks in ceilings and foundations, anchoring overhead lighting fixtures to the ceiling and following local seismic building standards, will help reduce the impact of earthquakes in the future. For more information on mitigation, contact your local emergency management office.
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