Students and staff at Alameda Unified School District (AUSD) schools will participate in the Great California ShakeOut on October 20, along with about 9.5 million other Californians.
The drill, which was launched in 2008, gives individuals and organizations a chance to practice behaviors that can help them survive and recover from a major earthquake. The drills are based on decades of research into what happens physically during an earthquake, as well as how best to respond and what motivates people to prepare.
The California ShakeOut is part of the larger, national Great ShakeOut event, which is expected to draw 35 million participants this year, making it the largest earthquake drill ever held.
“Living in the Bay Area, we all know an earthquake could strike at any time,” says Superintendent Sean McPhetridge. “This annual drill is a great way for all of us in the AUSD community to make sure we’re prepared and to practice protecting ourselves.”
At 10:20 am on October 20, AUSD school sites will practice “Drop, Cover, and Hold On,” which refers to the recommended:
- Drop onto your hands and knees (to avoid getting knocked down)
- Cover your head and neck with one arm and hand (for protection) or, if possible, crawl under a sturdy table or chair or next to an interior wall (away from windows)
- Hold on to the table or chair if you’re under one or cover your head and neck with your arms and hands
Superintendent McPhetridge urged AUSD families to use the ShakeOut as an opportunity to replenish earthquake supplies, discuss best practice responses with students, and create or review a family emergency plan. Earthquake preparedness resources for families are listed on the next page.
“What we do to prepare now will determine how well we can survive and recover in the event of an earthquake,” McPhetridge says. “This is an excellent opportunity to practice our response and identify what we all can do to keep ourselves, our families, our schools, and our community safer.”
AUSD: “Student Safety: Emergency Procedures” (includes tips for parents)
Great California ShakeOut: “Drop, Cover, and Hold On”
Great California ShakeOut: “Recommended Earthquake Actions”
American Red Cross: “Earthquake Preparedness”
Department of Homeland Security: “Plan to Protect Yourself and Your Family”
Earthquake Country Alliance: “Seven Steps to Earthquake Safety”