May 132015

Earthquake safety tips

Powerful tremors hit the Asian countries of Nepal, Afghanistan, India, China and Indonesia on Tuesday, May 12. An earthquake measuring 7.4 on the Richter scale hit Nepal just three weeks after the region was jolted by a powerful earthquake on April 25. Fresh tremors were felt today in the north India at around 12:35 pm IST. There was another earthquake measuring 6.3 on the Richter scale in Nepal around 1:00 pm. Later, massive aftershocks were felt all over India and Nepal.

During such crisis, one needs to take into consideration a few factors that can help save lives. Here are some safety tips that you can consider if you happen to be in an earthquake-hit or earthquake-prone area:

1. First and foremost, KEEP CALM. Do not panic, as it will only worsen the situation.

2. Douse all fires. There are chances that the fire may spread and/or lead to an explosion.

3. If you are inside a building at the time of an earthquake, stay indoors. Drop down and take cover under sturdy furniture, such as tables or a bed. Try to stay indoor until the shaking stops.

4. Stay away from glass or loose hanging objects. Keep away from bookshelves and furniture that can fall over you.

5. If you are outdoors, move away from buildings, trees, steep slopes and utility wires. Find a clear spot or an open ground and drop to the ground covering your head and neck with your hands.

6. If you are in a crowded place, do not rush for cover. It may cause panic among others and lead to a stampede.

7. If you are in a moving vehicle, slow down and stop in a safe manner as soon as possible. Stay in the vehicle till the shaking stops. If you are in a tunnel, try to move out of it quickly.

8. If you are in a lift, get out of it quickly. If you are in a high-rise building, you will notice that the fire alarms and sprinklers will stop functioning during a quake. So will the phones. Try and get out as safely as possible using the stairs or the fire escape.

9. Steer clear of windows and doors during a quake. If you are in bed, hold on to it, protecting your head with a pillow. Or go under it, which will be safer.

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