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Powerful California earthquake causes state officials to urge quake preparation in Illinois

SPRINGFIELD, Ill. (WEEK) — Following last week’s 7.1 magnitude earthquake in Southern California, the Illinois Emergency Management Agency is urging Illinois residents to prepare in case a major earthquake strikes the Land of Lincoln.

Officials say Illinois borders two active seismic zones…the New Madrid Seismic Zone, and the Wabash Valley Seismic Zone.

“Creating an environment of education, awareness and preparedness will save lives in Illinois,” said Alicia Tate-Nadeau, Acting Director of the Illinois Emergency Management Agency.  “While we cannot predict when the next major quake will occur, we can help people learn how to protect themselves and reduce damage to their homes.”

There are several steps people can take to help prevent injuries and property damage at home, including:

• Strapping water heaters and large appliances to wall studs
• Anchoring overhead light fixtures
• Fastening shelves to wall studs and securing cabinet doors with latches
• Strapping TVs, computers and other heavy equipment to prevent tipping
• Learning how to shut off gas, water and electricity in case the lines are damaged

Officials also encourage residents to learn how to “Drop, Cover, and Hold On” to prevent an earthquake related injury. That helps remind people to drop down to the floor, take cover under a sturdy desk, table, or furniture, and hold on to it until the earthquake end. Most casualties result from falling objects and debris caused by earth shaking.

The State’s earthquake drill is on Thursday, October 17th at 10:17 AM.

John Kendall

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