The Great Shakeout: Emergency Preparedness at Work

It’s coming! #GreatShakeOut is happening on October 20, 2016 across the state of #California. This is a great way to promote #emergencypreparedness at work, and at home. For more details on this event, check out: http://www.shakeout.org/california/.

In 2015, we had 10.4 million participants. Why is this such a big deal for Californians? You know your out of town visitors are always concerned about earthquakes because it’s something new and different. For those of us who have lived through countless earthquakes, what does this day mean? I think the larger significance here, aside from being prepared for “The Big One” we’ve all been hearing about and waiting for year after year, it’s about being aware of your surroundings and knowing how to respond in a natural disaster situation.

From apps such as “Beat the Quake” to FEMA’s mobile app (https://www.fema.gov/mobile-app), preparedness is something on everyone’s minds. Of course, active shooter situations in the news recently make people more uneasy about their safety at work, so the best thing for you to do as an employer is to encourage preparedness through events such as The Great California Shake Out!

In most situations, DROP, COVER, and HOLD ON will be the best lesson to teach throughout your organization. Here’s why:

DROP – being on your hands and knees protects you from being knocked down and also allows you to crawl to shelter and stay low.

COVER – use one arm and hand to cover your neck and head. If a sturdy table or desk is nearby, crawl under that for shelter. If not, crawl to a nearby wall (away from windows!). Stay on your knees in order to protect your vital organs.

HOLD ON – until the ground stops shaking! Hold onto the shelter with one hand and be prepared to move with your shelter if it shifts positions. If no shelter, hold on to your head and neck with both arms/hands.

Now would be a great time to check your first aid kits, emergency preparedness kits, safety kits, and all other tools at your disposal for natural disasters or other emergency situations at work! #beprepared #workplacesafety