How to Drop,
Cover, and Hold
If You Are Inside:
When the shaking starts, you should find a clear spot away from buildings, trees, streetlights, and power lines, then Drop, Cover and Hold On. Stay there until the shaking stops.
Pull over to a clear location, stop and stay there with your seatbelt fastened until the shaking stops. Once the shaking stops, proceed with caution and avoid bridges or ramps that might have been damaged.
These are general guidelines for most situations. Depending on where you are (in bed, driving, in a theater, etc.), you might take other actions, as described in Recommended Earthquake Safety Actions. Stay indoors until the shaking stops and you are sure it is safe to exit. In most buildings in British Columbia you are safer if you stay where you are until the shaking stops.
It is extremely important for a person to move as little as possible to reach the place of safety they have identified because most injuries occur when people try to move more than a short distance during the shaking. Earthquakes occur without any warning and may be so violent that you cannot run or crawl.
Identify safe places such as under a sturdy piece of furniture or against an interior wall in your home, office or school so that when the shaking starts you can respond quickly. An immediate response to move to the safe place can save lives. And that safe place should be within a few steps to avoid injury from flying debris.
What NOT To Do…
Get in a Doorway!
An early earthquake photo is a collapsed adobe home with the door frame as the only standing part. From this came our belief that a doorway is the safest place to be during an earthquake. In modern houses and buildings, doorways are no safer, and they do not protect you from flying or falling objects. Get under a table instead!
Trying to run in an earthquake is dangerous, as the ground is moving and you can easily fall or be injured by debris or glass. Running outside is especially dangerous, as glass, bricks, or other building components may be falling. You are much safer to stay inside and get under a table.
- Visit www.dropcoverholdon.org
- Recommended Earthquake Safety Actions (including situations when you cannot get beneath a table) ENGLISH -PDF SPANISH – PDF
- Earthquake Preparedness Guide for People with Disabilities and Other Access or Functional Needs (8 pages)ENGLISH -PDF SPANISH – PDF.
- Key Earthquake Safety Tips for People with Disabilities and Other Access or Functional Needs (2 pages) ENGLISH -PDF SPANISH – PDF.
- Drop, Cover, and Hold On overview flyer from ShakeOut BC ENGLISH -PDF SPANISH – PDF.