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B.C. prepares for great shake out

On Jan. 26, 2011 a locally driven, provincewide ‘Drop, Cover, and Hold On’ drill will take place called The Great British Columbia ShakeOut.

On Jan. 26, 2011 a locally driven, provincewide ‘Drop, Cover, and Hold On’ drill will take place called The Great British Columbia ShakeOut.

All residents, agencies, businesses, and organizations across British Columbia are encouraged to take part in the largest earthquake drill in Canadian history.

The following instructions can assist those wishing to co-ordinate a drill for their respective agency, business, organization and/or group.

Going forward, you can customize and build a drill that suits your specific needs. You can also find additional drill options for those who want a greater challenge at

Simple Drop, Cover, and Hold On Drill:

This drill uses simple steps to inform individuals how to perform Drop, Cover, and Hold On – a quake-safe action designed to protect people from falling furniture and flying objects that can become projectiles during ground shaking.

Before the drill:

u Register as an official participant at (Please note: individuals, families and businesses should only register once).

u Download posters and flyers to assist in promoting the drill at

Inform your team:

u The date and time of your drill.

u How to correctly perform Drop, Cover, and Hold On, wherever they are.

u Your expectations for their participation (i.e. Drop/Cover/Hold On, gather at a central location for a head count, post-drill discussions).

u Encourage everyone to invite friends, families, and neighbors to register as individuals, businesses, agencies or organizations at, so they participate, too, and receive information directly on how to be safe during an earthquake.

u (Optional) Download realistic sound effects and safety information to play during your drill by downloading recordings from

During the drill:

u Announce that the earthquake drill has begun or begin playing downloaded recording and direct participants to Drop, Cover, and Hold On.

u Count seconds out loud for the duration of the quake. This will help keep people focused and calm and will help you identify how long the earthquake lasts. The longer it lasts, the more cautious everyone will need to be.

u When the shaking stops (or when the all clear sounds) count to 60 to give things a chance to settle. Suggest that while under a sturdy desk or table they look around at what might fall on them in a real earthquake.

u After at least one minute or once the sound effects recording has ended, announce that the shaking is over and that everyone can stand up again. Thank them for participating.

u Encourage everyone to discuss their experiences with one another.

After the drill:

u Ask for feedback on how the drill went.

u Schedule the next drill for one year later (or sooner ).

u Share photos and stories at

u Encourage all to prepare at home.

Basic items needed to survive for 72 hours

u Water – at least two litres of water per person per day (including small bottles that can be carried easily in case of an evacuation order)

u Food – that won’t spoil, such as canned food, energy bars and dried foods (remember to replace the food and water once a year)

u Manual can opener

u Flashlight and batteries

u Candles and matches or lighter (remember to place candles in sturdy containers and to put them out before going to sleep)

u Battery-powered or wind-up radio (and extra batteries)

u First Aid Kit

u Special items such as prescription medications, infant formula and equipment for people with disabilities

u Extra keys for your car and house

u Some cash in smaller bills, such as $10 bills (travellers cheques are also useful) and change for pay phones

u A copy of your emergency plan including contact information

Additional kit supplies:

It is always a good idea to have extra supplies on hand. Here are some recommendations:

u A change of clothing and footwear for each household member

u Sleeping bag or warm (foil) blanket for each household member

u A whistle (in case you need to attract attention)

u Garbage bags for personal sanitation

u Toilet paper and other personal care supplies

u Safety gloves

u Basic tools (hammer, pliers, wrench, screwdrivers, fasteners, work gloves)

u Small fuel-driven stove and fuel (follow manufacturer’s directions and store properly)

u Two additional litres of water per person per day for cooking and cleaning