For the fourth year in a row, Washington state is participating in the Great Washington ShakeOut “drop, cover and hold” earthquake drill on Oct. 15 at 10:15 a.m.
The drill emphasizes the urgent need for people, organizations, schools, communities and businesses to practice what to do to be safe and to be ready before an earthquake strikes. In addition, coastal communities will test their tsunami alert sirens at the same date and time using the real sound of the siren, not the Westminster Chimes that typically happen during the monthly tests.
Last year, more than 1 million Washingtonians participated in the Great Washington ShakeOut. As of Sept. 15, more than 652,000 people have registered with more than a month to go before the big drill. People and organizations can sign up to participate at www.shakeout.org/washington.
This year, residents and businesses who can’t do the drill on Oct. 15 are encouraged to register and do the drill when it’s most convenient. The important part is just to practice earthquake safety – and then do one more thing, either a communications plan, an emergency kit, map your neighborhood or even make sure you have a plan for your pets in the face of an emergency.
For more information on preparedness, visit http://mil.wa.gov/preparedness.
We also encourage participants to take photos of themselves participating in the drill and post those photos to social media using the hashtag #washakeout.
Besides residents and businesses, dozens of schools across the state will participate in the drill. Franklin Pierce School District will conduct a formal media event during the ShakeOut event at precisely 10:15 a.m, Oct. 15. The event will take place at Franklin Pierce’s Midland Elementary School. Contact the Superintendent’s Office at (253) 298-3010 for more information.
For media interested in video or photos before the ShakeOut date, the Washington Youth Academy in Bremerton will make itself available to have its students practice earthquake safety in advance of Oct. 15. Contact Director Larry Pierce at (360) 473-2609 or [email protected].
Media availabilities are also being worked out at participating schools in the Vancouver, Wash. And Spokane areas. An updated advisory will be issued with more information in the coming weeks.