News / USA

Californians Urged to Get Ready for Earthquakes

Red Cross education specialist Lisa Klink stresses the importance of having a disaster kit ready.
Red Cross education specialist Lisa Klink stresses the importance of having a disaster kit ready.

Multimedia

The earthquake and tsunami in Japan earlier this year served as dramatic reminders that people everywhere should be ready for disasters.  Here in the United States, scientists say California will one day be rocked by a major earthquake.  Local authorities are trying to ensure that everyone is ready.

Children "duck, cover and hold on" in practices that remind all Californians to be ready for an earthquake.  

A 6.7 magnitude quake struck near the Los Angeles suburb of Northridge in 1994, killing 57 people and injuring thousands.

Experts say a much bigger temblor, possibly of magnitude 7.8, is likely to hit near Los Angeles on the southern San Andreas Fault in coming years. It could result in thousands of deaths and billions of dollars in damage.

Northern California could also be struck, as San Francisco was in the disastrous earthquake and fire of 1906.

The American Red Cross sells disaster kits, and everyone should have one, says Red Cross education specialist Lisa Klink.  They should also have a stock of essential supplies for a disaster.

"You really may be stuck on your own for a couple of days and should really be prepared for that," said Klink.  "We advise people to have a least three day's worth of food and water and supplies at home, ideally a week, but at the very least, three days."

Some Californians take the message to heart.  Nicole Perzik, who is walking her dogs in the park, says she's ready.

"I've got water and all kinds of supplies in case something happens, especially when you own pets," said Perzik.  "That's what makes me feel more aware."

California is home to people from all over the world, and part of the challenge is getting out the message that they need to be prepared.  

Some have experienced other disasters, including tornadoes and flooding that recently devastated parts of the American Midwest.   Midwestern transplant Barry Goldenberg says he has experienced those and is ready for earthquakes.

"They don't bother me as much as they do some other people who may be from Los Angeles or from California because maybe I'm used to natural disasters," noted Goldenberg.

California has some of the strictest building codes in the world, but officials worry about schools and say that even in safe buildings, people can be injured.

They need to be prepared, says Mark Benthien of the Southern California Earthquake Center.

"Our real first responders are ourselves and our neighbors," said Benthien.  "The first government responders would be the firefighters and such, and they'll come, but they may not come for quite some time."

The American Red Cross and local fire departments offer preparedness training, and officials there say everyone needs an emergency plan in place in advance of a disaster.

Film producer Stanley Isaacs took a preparedness course and he and his wife were ready for the 1994 Northridge earthquake.

"I was back from location on a movie and I had assembled a vest, because I had a vest that I was wearing on location, and I put flashlight, tools and stuff in there, and the night of the quake, I put it on and I handed her a radio and a flashlight," recalled Isaacs.  "And she felt comforted and never forgot the fact that I had given that to her."

He created and now sells the so-called Grab-N-Go survival vest, complete with emergency supplies, including water, a radio and flashlight.

Scientists say a major quake will rock California.  The only questions are when it will happen and if people are ready.

You May Like

Karzai's Legacy: Missed Opportunities?

Afghanistan's president leaves behind a much different nation than the one he inherited, yet his legacy from 13 years in power is getting mixed reviews More

Secret Service Chief Under Fire for White House Security Breach

Julia Pierson faces tough questions from lawmakers after recent intrusion at White House, says: 'It is clear that our security plan was not executed properly' More

Frustrated, Liberian Students Want Ebola Fight Role

Thousands have volunteered to go to counties, rural villages to talk to people in their language about deadly virus More

This forum has been closed.
Comments
     
There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Malaysia Struggles to Stop People Joining Jihadi
X
Mahi Ramakrishnan
September 30, 2014 2:16 PM
Malaysian authorities say militant groups like the so-called "Islamic State" have used social media to entice at least three dozen Malaysian Muslims to fight in what they call "jihad" in Syria and Iraq. As Mahi Ramkrishnan reports from Kuala Lumpur, counterterrorism police are deeply worried about what could happen when these militants return home.
Video

Video Malaysia Struggles to Stop People Joining Jihad

Malaysian authorities say militant groups like the so-called "Islamic State" have used social media to entice at least three dozen Malaysian Muslims to fight in what they call "jihad" in Syria and Iraq. As Mahi Ramkrishnan reports from Kuala Lumpur, counterterrorism police are deeply worried about what could happen when these militants return home.
Video

Video Could US Have Done More to Stop Rise of Islamic State?

President Obama says airstrikes against Islamic State militants in Syria will likely continue for some time because, in his words, "there is a cancer that has grown for too long." So what if President Obama had acted sooner in Syria to arm more-moderate opponents of both the Islamic State and the Syrian government? VOA State Department Correspondent Scott Stearns reports from the United Nations.
Video

Video Treasure Hunters Seek 'Hidden Treasure' in Central Kenya

Could a cave in a small village in central Kenya be the site of buried treasure? A rumor of riches, left behind by colonialists, has some residents dreaming of wealth, while others see it as a dangerous hoax. VOA's Gabe Joselow has the story.
Video

Video Iran's Rouhani Skeptical on Syria Strikes

Iranian President Hassan Rouhani expressed skepticism Friday that U.S.-led airstrikes in Iraq and Syria could crush Islamic State militants. From New York, VOA’s Margaret Besheer reports the president was also hopeful that questions about Iran’s nuclear program could be resolved soon.
Video

Video US House Speaker: Congress Should Debate Authorization Against IS

As wave after wave of U.S. airstrikes target Islamic State militants, the speaker of the Republican-controlled House of Representatives says he would be willing to call Congress back into session to debate a formal, broad authorization for the use of military force. VOA’s Michael Bowman reports from Washington, where legislators left town 10 days ago for a seven-week recess.
Video

Video Ebola Patients Find No Treatment at Sierra Leone Holding Center

At a holding facility in Makeni, central Sierra Leone, dozens of sick people sit on the floor in an empty university building. They wait in filthy conditions. It's a 16-hour drive by ambulance to Kailahun Ebola treatment center. Adam Bailes was there and reports on what he says are some of the worst situations he has seen since the beginning of this Ebola outbreak. And he says it appears case numbers may already be far worse than authorities acknowledge.
Video

Video Identifying Bodies Found in Texas Border Region

Thousands of immigrants have died after crossing the border from Mexico into remote areas of the southwestern United States in recent years. Local officials in south Texas alone have found hundreds of unidentified bodies and buried them in mass graves in local cemeteries. Now an anthropologist and her students at Baylor University have been exhuming bodies and looking for clues to identify them. VOA’s Greg Flakus has more from Waco, Texas.
Video

Video Ebola Robs Liberians of Chance to Say Good-Bye to Loved Ones

In Liberia, where Ebola has killed more than 1,500 people, authorities have worked hard to convince people to allow specialized burial teams to take away dead bodies. But these safety measures, while necessary, make it hard for people to say good bye to their loved ones. VOA's Anne Look reports on the tragedy from Liberia.
Colonel Steve ‘Spiros’ Pisanos left Greece and came to the U.S. to learn to fly. He flew fighters for the Allies in World War II, narrowly escaping death multiple times.Colonel Steve ‘Spiros’ Pisanos left Greece and came to the U.S. to learn to fly. He flew fighters for the Allies in World War II, narrowly escaping death multiple times.

AppleAndroid