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School Preparedness for Emergency Situations: Earthquake

The Great ShakeOut: Many FUSD schools participate in the world's largest earthquake drill, the ShakeOut, held on the third Thursday of October.

Earthquake drills can be held any school day as determined by the site.

Be Informed

Make a Plan

  • Listen to your Teacher during drills
  • "Drop, Cover, and Hold On" is the appropriate action
  • ShakeOut is an opportunity to practice how to protect ourselves during earthquakes

During Earthquake

DROP Position protects you from being knocked down and stay low and crawl to shelter if nearby

COVER your head and neck with one arm and hand

  • If a sturdy table or desk is nearby, crawl underneath it for shelter
  • If no shelter is nearby, crawl next to an interior wall (away from windows)
  • Stay on your knees; bend over to protect vital organs

HOLD ON until shaking stops

  • Under shelter: hold on to it with one hand; be ready to move with your shelter if it shifts
  • No shelter: hold on to your head and neck with both arms and hands
  • Do not run outside. Do not get in a doorway as this does not provide protection from falling objects

After Event

  • Improve safety immediately after an earthquake by evacuating if necessary, helping the injured and preventing further injuries or damage
  • Use your training in first aid to assist those in need. Look around your environment to identify any new hazards such as leaking gas lines, damage to the building, water or electric lines, or other things that may be dangerous, especially if there are aftershocks

Notes: Your past experience in earthquakes may give you a false sense of safety - learn to immediately protect yourself after the first jolt.

Earthquake Safety Tips
Emergency Preparedness
Also use info from Comprehensive School Safety Plan - CSSP

Content based in part on


Stay Calm: approach any emergency logically (not emotionally) – rehearse calming techniques like breathing in slowly or counting to 10 to focus before action – mindfulness and controlling your fear will save lives. Try not to freeze during a high stress situation.