Asistel in English
Preparing the home for an earthquake
Since there is no way to predict an earthquake, how well you, your family and your home survive a strong trembler depends on how well you prepare yourselves beforehand.
To reduce earthquake hazards in your home or business, secure anything heavy enough cause an injury if it falls on you or a child. Pay special attention to furniture close to beds, such as dressers, shelves and mirrors. If possible, put beds far away from windows.
Stores carry a wide variety of products to secure furniture and other objects and reduce the risk of injury due to an earthquake. In particular, carefully secure the hot water heater. Make sure flexible gas hoses are connected to the stove and clothing dryer with enough slack to allow for movement of the appliance in an earthquake.
Look for products to secure televisions, stereos and computers to desks and stands so they won’t fall in an earthquake.
Be mindful of the glassware and dishes in the kitchen. Install security latches on kitchen cupboards and display cabinets where fragile objects are stored or displayed. Make sure that mirrors and framed art, especially those covered in glass, are hung from closed hooks so they can’t bounce off. Only soft art, such as tapestries, should be placed over beds and sofas.
Secure bookcases and other tall furniture to a wall stud, not just the plaster board, so they won’t fall during a quake. Flexible fasteners, such as nylon straps, allow tall objects to sway without falling over, reducing the strain on the studs.
Be sure chandeliers, ceiling fans or other hanging lights are supported with a cable bolted to the ceiling joist. The cable should have enough slack to allow it to sway.
Keep fragile objects, and dangerous and flammable liquids, such as paint, pesticides, and cleaning products in secured cabinets or close to the ground.
Make sure you have the tools to shut off gas, water and electricity if the lines are damaged and practice using them on the water and electricity. Do not practice turning off the gas as only the utility company can turn it back on again.
A message from the University of California Cooperative Extension and the California Office of Emergency Services.