Disasters can take place in many forms: earthquakes, fires, storms, floods, and even tsunamis.
As part of the awareness campaign for Disaster Preparedness Month, the City of Pacifica wants to make sure you’re prepared in the event of a disaster. Every household should have a plan in case of an emergency:
• Get the family together and talk about what you would do.
• Take part in First Aid and CPR training from organizations such as the American Red Cross.
• Have first aid supplies and medications on hand.
• Stock up on food and water. Because local emergency services will be very busy, the City of Pacifica recommends that 72 hours’ worth of food, water, and other supplies should be stored at your home.
• Keep a battery operated radio available for use.
What to do if there's an earthquake
In the event of an earthquake, stay indoors. You should get under a sturdy table or move to an inside hallway. If you’re outside, move to an open area away from power lines, trees, walls, and chimneys. If you’re in a moving vehicle, pull to the side of the road and stop. Remain in your vehicle until the shaking has stopped. No matter where you are, keep in mind that there may be aftershocks. Use caution around buildings and be aware of falling objects.
What to do if there's a tsunami
Tsunamis may follow earthquakes, even if the earthquakes happen on the other side of the ocean. A tsunami could arrive within minutes or could take several hours to move across the ocean. Natural warning signs are: strong ground shaking, a loud ocean roar, or the water receding unusually far exposing the ocean floor. Official warnings may come in several ways: radio, television, text message, door-to-door contact, or emergency sirens. Pacifica has sirens located in Sharp Park, Rockaway, and Linda Mar. These sirens are tested the first Wednesday of every month at a reduced volume.
If those warning signs occur, determine if you are in a hazard zone. If you are in low laying areas near the ocean, move inland or to high ground. Remain there and seek information from local radio or television stations.
• You can identify natural hazards in your neighborhood by going to http://myhazards.calema.ca.gov.
• Another great source of information is SMC Alert. Every Pacifica resident can sign up for a free account via www.smcalert.info. Once registered, emergency alerts (including road closures) can be sent via email messages or test alerts, although there may be a fee for text messaging.
For more information, visit the City of Pacifica webpage or stop by the Emergency Preparedness & Safety Commission Booth at the Fog Fest.