Great ShakeOut Drill returns, city to hold drills

Sam Heyrat, left, and John Pears get under the table during The Great California ShakeOut, a state-wide earthquake drill, at Valencia Library on Thursday, Oct. 19, 2017. The two are members of Angel Wings Agency, a local group that supports people with disabilities. Nikolas Samuels/The Signal

Santa Clarita Valley residents are invited to join more than 10 million Californians in participating in this year’s Great ShakeOut Drill to better prepare for a major earthquake.

On Thursday, Oct. 17, at 10:17 a.m., just days after the Bay Area and Central California were struck by two temblors of 4.5 and 4.7 magnitudes, participants will be asked to “drop, cover and hold on” as part of the annual event that helps communities practice safety measures and review preparedness plans. 

“With earthquakes being inevitable, you can be struck at any time,” Rebecca Widdison,  management analyst for the city of Santa Clarita, said Tuesday. “This is an opportunity to practice how to drop, cover and hold on and give you that peace of mind that you’re better prepared in an emergency.” 

Besides some local schools and businesses, the city of Santa Clarita has scheduled drills at city facilities, including at the Newhall and Canyon Country Community centers, public library branches and at City Hall, where an evacuation drill has been scheduled. Staff will play an audio recording at 10:17 a.m., indicating the start of the drill. 

Some steps to take during an earthquake include to avoid going to a doorway for safety, take cover under a sturdy desk or table and hold on until shaking has stopped.  

For more information, visit, or contact Widdison at 661-284-1407 or [email protected].

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