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An Update From Earthquake Country

a helicopter flies over Sendai in a post at Holy in the Daily
a helicopter flies over Sendai, Japan

Some of my friends and family think I’m nuts to carry water and energy bars around in an emergency bag in my car. I also carry a spare tire and a jack. I really don’t think about my emergency bag or my spare tire unless they are needed–at that point, I’m thankful they are there.

We live in earthquake country on the Central Coast of California, 50 miles from Parkfield—Grand Central Station for the Big One expected by all earthquake experts.

A friend with connections in Christchurch, New Zealand told me that her friends were without water for six days, and their neighborhood still shares a Porta Potti since sewage pipes were destroyed in last month’s 6.3 earthquake. Japan’s 9.0 earthquake last Friday was 8,000 times greater than the one in Christchurch.

Our beaches here on the Central Coast were evacuated and put on tsunami warnings Friday morning. Although only minor damage occurred, other areas in California weren’t so lucky. We are part of the Pacific Ring of Fire and have yet to pay our dues.

Our city government is telling us that after a major disaster, community resources will be spread pretty thin. This includes disasters such as earthquake, fire, and terrorist attacks. Prudence would tell us to prepare for any disaster, especially one that seems inevitable at some point in the future. Here are 5 tips to help you prepare for disaster, even personal disaster, such as a house fire or the death of a family member.

Resources for disaster preparation:

  1. Website 72Hours.org recommends preparing an emergency kit for 72 hours. Their website contains many resources to help you prepare at minimum expense.
  2. Reader’s Digest explains How to Save a Life in 12 different emergency situations
  3. Organize your family’s essential information in case of an emergency. I use the book If Something Happens To Me (available on Amazon.com), to keep all our insurance, bank accounts, will, passwords, basic list of bills, doctor’s names and phone numbers, medical data, and even my computer backup information recorded in one location. Then I tell those who would need such information where the book is located in case of an emergency.
  4. Prepare a home inventory to document everything you own for insurance purposes. This short YouTube clip explains how to do this.

(If you received this post via RSS or email and cannot view the short clip, please visit my Holy in the Daily blog to view it.)

For more information on earthquakes see my post Earthquake–Earth Groaning.

If you have other helpful suggestions, please share them with us in the comment section below.

In Him together, Susan Gaddis

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This Post Has 8 Comments

  1. Donna

    Thank you for the great information! I think many of us have been complacent when it comes to emergency preparedness. I’m so sorry that our friends in Japan have had to undergo this horrific catastrophe for me to finally start getting it.
    I will definitely start buy checking out the resources you’ve provided here!

  2. mary

    Great checklist of resources. Thank you! Preparedness is definitely a measure of wisdom we could all do with a little more of. And I too am grieving for those in Japan.

  3. Steve Lynstrum

    My friends at the California Office of Emergency Services have a wealth of information regarding home safety, civil safety, and what we can do to prepare. Check this link out. http://www.oes.ca.gov/ There is a tab devoted to preparadness that goes into detail about how to prepare yourself, your family, friends, and community.
    This state agency works full time to ensure we are as prepared as possible for the unexpected and the disasterous. Take advantage of their many free resources; our tax dollars pay for this so everything is provided free.
    For those interested there is also advanced emergency preparadness training available at the California Specialized Training Institute at Camp San Lus Obispo. Many Fire Marshalls, CIty Managers, and others from around the country involved in public safety attend these courses to become experts on disaster response and the integration of communications during natural disasters. Altho expensive these courses give detailed perspective and info on how the emergency management system works and how the government down to the city and community level plans to deal with disasters.
    However, the planning starts with each of us in our own homes. Thanks for bringing this most relevant topic to light! Susan, you’re a brilliant spark in many lives!

  4. Susan Gaddis

    Thanks for all the helpful information, Steve. That link contains a wealth of data that I need to digest. I hope others check it out too.

    Donna, Mary, and Liz–I’m pleased you found the information helpful. Liz, I know you are headed our way in May from across the pond, and there are no earthquakes in the forecast for May! 🙂

    Nice to meet you, Bob. I enjoyed your link and look forward to exploring your blog more. Thanks for the visit and follow.

  5. Virgil Stanphill

    What a perfect text from the Psalms for your topic. I also like Psalm 91 – but your Ps. 46 text is laser targeted.

    Yes – God is our refuge and we’re going to need Him! (I know, we need Him anyway. Yes, we do. But I know from my own experience people turn to God more in a crisis. So that’s how it can “work together for good”.

    I’m right above you on that “ring of fire” up here in OR. Our little town of Brrokings-Harbor sustained quite a bit of damage (in the commercial section, by the docks. I heard you guys did too up in Crescent City.

    God bless. Thanks for your post. Great stuff!

  6. Susan Gaddis

    I’m down on the Central Coast and we had some damage over at Morro Bay, Avila, and Pismo Beach. The new reports showed your area getting quite a bit more damage than our neck of the woods, Virgil. Time to be a praying, I do think. 🙂
    Thanks for stopping by and sharing with us.

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