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Practice Earthquake Preparedness with the Great California ShakeOut Earthquake Drill

Thousands of Golden Valley High School students wait on the football field for the all clear to head back to their classrooms during the 2016 Great California ShakeOut drill at Golden Valley High School. Dan Watson/The Signal

By Councilmember Bob Kellar

Councilmember Bob Kellar

The recent earthquakes in Mexico are a sobering reminder of the kind of destruction an earthquake can quickly wreak. And like Mexico, California is prone to seismic activity. California has earthquake hazards throughout the state, from the southern San Andreas Fault to the northern Cascadia Subduction Zone. Given these circumstances, being prepared for earthquakes is a must when you live in the Golden State.

I’d like to encourage everyone in the Santa Clarita community to join The Great California ShakeOut, a statewide earthquake drill held annually to prepare people to survive and recover quickly from major quakes.

The City of Santa Clarita is participating in The Great California ShakeOut by hosting an earthquake drill at 10:19 a.m. on Thursday, October 19, 2017 at all Santa Clarita Public Library branches located in Canyon Country, Newhall and Valencia. During the drill, participants will be asked to drop, cover and hold on. For library locations, please visit

For those of you that may not be able to attend the library-hosted drill, I encourage you to practice the following tips at home with your friends and family to stay safe when the earth shakes:

Drop, Cover and Hold On:

  • Move only as far as necessary to reach a safe place.
  • Take cover under a sturdy desk or table and hold on to it firmly.
  • Be prepared to move with the shaking.
  • Hold on until the ground stops shaking and it is safe to move.
  • Do not go to a doorway as a place of safety—injury can occur due to doors swinging.
  • If outdoors, find a spot away from buildings, trees, streetlights, power lines and overpasses. Drop to the ground until the shaking stops.
  • Never run out of a building while the ground is still shaking.
  • If in a vehicle, pull over at a clear location and stop. Stay in the vehicle, with the seatbelt fastened, until the shaking stops.

Although we do not have the power to control these events, we can plan and prepare to minimize the damage when they do occur. The Great California ShakeOut is an opportunity to prepare an emergency recovery plan with family members, coworkers and schoolmates.

For more information about The Great California ShakeOut or to register, please visit For more information on how to be prepared for emergencies, visit our City’s website at

 Bob Kellar is a member of the Santa Clarita City Council and can be reached at [email protected].


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