Earthquakes, precautions during and after earthquakes. Human behavior in a danger zone.

Earthquakes, probably the most frightening of natural disasters. They happen suddenly and give little to their approximation. Unlike other natural disasters, such as floods and fires, it’s almost impossible to prepare for earthquakes. They range from small vibrations of the soil, which are recorded only by sensitive instruments, to the manifestation of forces breaking mountains. 

Earthquakes, precautions during and after earthquakes. Human Behavior in the Hazardous Area.

An earthquake is understood as underground shocks and oscillations of the earth’s surface caused by tectonic processes and transmitted over long distances in the form of elastic vibrations. The largest number of earthquakes are confined to zones of active faults in the earth’s crust and to mid-ocean ridges. The strongest tend to occur in places where one platform goes under another, like along the coast of North America, where the San Andrea fault zone is especially dangerous in this regard..

depend on where the person was at the time of the earthquake. If in a building, then everything depends on the construction of the building, its number of storeys and earthquake resistance. Multi-storey non-earthquake-resistant concrete panel buildings are the most dangerous.

During an earthquake, they add up like a house of cards, and the surviving people receive a wide variety of injuries, injuries and fractures, as well as the most unpleasant damage to the body, compression syndrome. When located in an open area, injuries from falling trees, detached rocks, the occurrence of rockfalls, and the formation of cracks in the ground are possible. Injuries correspond to the cause.

When a tree falls, these are fractures and squeezing, wounds. When falling into a crack, it all depends on its depth and the ability to quickly find the victim or the ability to get out of it yourself. In earthquake-prone areas, where there is a high probability of earthquakes of magnitude 7 and above, half the population of our planet lives and about 40% of all cities in the world are located. In terms of the number of victims, earthquakes are in the 2nd-3rd place after hurricanes and floods, and in terms of economic damage, among the first four reasons (floods, hurricanes, droughts).

Earthquake Precautions.

If there was a warning about a possible earthquake, keep the receiver tuned to your local radio station for the latest messages and recommendations. Turn off gas, electricity, and water if advised. Remove large and heavy objects from high shelves from where they can fall on you. Place bottles, glass and earthenware, as well as other breakable items in low places. Prepare fresh water and emergency supplies, flashlight, first aid kit and fire extinguisher.

Stay away from everything that may fall on you: trees outside the city, as they can be uprooted. Buildings in the city, even if they are strong enough to withstand, their elements can be thrown down. It is best to evacuate to an open area, but if this is not possible and you have little time, it’s safer to stay in the building. On the street, damage to gas and electricity can increase the danger. People entering and exiting the building are most at risk from architectural details falling from above..

If an earthquake catches you indoors.

If an earthquake catches you indoors, stay there. Put out an open fire. Stay away from glass, including mirrors, and especially from large windows. The inside corner of the house or the well-fortified inner doorway are good places to shelter. The lower floor or basement is likely to give a better chance of survival. Upper floors may collapse with you.

Provide enough exits. Get under a table or other piece of durable furniture that can provide protection and airspace. While in the store, stay away from large racks of goods that could fall. On high floors, stay where you are. Never enter the elevator. Stairs can be crammed with panicking people..

If an earthquake catches you on the street.

Stay away from tall buildings. Do not intentionally enter underground spaces and tunnels where you may find yourself blocked by rubble and destruction. If you managed to get out into the open space, do not return to the buildings, as if even small tremors follow, they can destroy buildings whose strength has already been broken by the first tremors. If you are on a hillside, it’s safer to climb to the top. The slopes are prone to landslides, and there is little chance of surviving those that have fallen under thousands of tons of earth and stones, which can move at terrifying speed. There are cases when people were saved by tightly grouping.

The beach, the sloping coast, provided that they are not under the rocks, are initially quite safe, but since the earthquake often follows a tidal wave, you should leave them in a high open place as soon as the tremors end. Subsequent shocks are unlikely to be more dangerous than tsunamis. In an earthquake, speed is very important. There is not enough time for organizing the salvation of other people. If necessary, use force to bring them to a safe place or make them lie down on the ground.

If an earthquake catches you in the car.

Stop as fast as possible, but stay in the car. It will to some extent protect against falling objects. Sit below the seat level and you will get extra protection if something falls on the car. When the jolts cease, carefully monitor for possible obstructions and dangers. Broken wires and cables, damaged roads or bridges that may collapse..

Earthquake Safety Measures.

The destruction of sewage systems and drains, the contamination of the water and the bodies of the dead, remaining under the ruins, all this can make the risk of disease as deadly as the earthquake itself. Bury all the corpses of both humans and animals. Do not take shelter in damaged buildings or debris. Make shelter from the wreckage.

Pay special attention to sanitation and personal hygiene. Filter and boil all the water. If there is a gas leak, do not light matches and lighters, do not turn on electrical appliances. A spark will ignite or explode the gas. Before using the toilet, check that the sewage system is working. Open sideboards, cabinets with caution, objects may fall on you. Get ready for aftershock with re-shocks after a major earthquake.

Based on materials from the book Encyclopedia of Survival.
Chernysh I. V.

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