Deschutes County Sheriff’s Office Emergency Management encourages residents to prepare for all emergencies.
In light of the fact Oregon Governor John Kitzhaber recently proclaimed March to be Earthquake and Tsunami Awareness Month, we want to provide information relating to earthquake preparedness.
Although not common, Deschutes County does lie in a region affected by earthquakes and residents often travel to regions prone to earthquakes.
Experts believe that the greatest risk to residents are due to injuries from falling items, gas leaks, fires, infrastructure damage, and residents being unable to meet basic needs (food, water, and shelter).
Residents can do a number of things to prepare for earthquakes, thus minimizing the risk. Many of these preparations are beneficial during any disaster.
- Develop a disaster kit that is capable of sustaining your family for a minimum of 72 hours and can be taken with you.
- Develop a plan that includes things to do during an emergency, what do to if you are separated, and what do if you are evacuated. Make sure your family knows the plan.
- Prepare your home by securing large heavy items such as bookshelves, televisions, and other items that could fall and injure you or others. Secure your water heater to prevent it from being dislodged during an earthquake. Identify utility shutoffs include gas, water, and power as it may be necessary to shut these services off to your home for a time to prevent further damage.
- It is expected that a massive earthquake in our region would likely cause significant disruption to the commodity supply systems. For this reason, we encourage residents to stock up on food, water, medicine and other critical needs to sustain themselves for at least two weeks. A larger supply is recommended.
- Learn what to do during an earthquake. Experts recommend the Drop, Cover and Hold method to protect you and your loved ones from danger. For more information go to:
Many people believe that the government will be able to provide these basic necessities after a major earthquake. However, history shows that in the initial response phase to a natural disaster of this magnitude, our local governments will be focused on the security and safety of our communities. So it is vital that families plan and prepare to be on their own for as long as five days.
The Deschutes County Sheriff’s Office in cooperation with our partners is proud to serve the citizens of Deschutes County, but it is critical we all do our part to build a strong and resilient community.