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What to Do During and After an Earthquake While at Work—Here Are Some Essential Tips

Stay safe at the office during and after an earthquake with these tips.

By: Karen Grace Libao | December 13, 2023
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We all know that The Big One—a high-magnitude earthquake to hit the West Valley Fault—can come anytime without notice.

Image: Quezon City Government website

When it strikes, you can be at home, on a commute, or at the office. While we can do nothing to stop natural disasters like earthquakes, preparedness and proper disaster management can help us if a big earthquake occurs. Here are some helpful tips to remember when you feel the ground shaking at the workplace.

DURING AN EARTHQUAKE


1. Stay calm.



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Staying calm during a crisis can save lives.

Image: Pexels

The number one rule during a disaster is to never panic. Panicking can cause mass hysteria, which can worsen the situation. It’s essential to know the proper way of carrying yourself and what to do step by step during an earthquake.


2. Stay away from windows and heavy objects.

Keep yourself sheltered in an office area away from breakable objects such as glass windows and chandeliers. Study each corner and steer away from areas with heavy things as they might fall over you and cause injury. If there is no other available location, remember the Triangle of Life again and position yourself in the safest possible corner.


2. Drop. Cover. Hold.



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Drop, cover, and hold is the golden rule in case of an earthquake.

Image: Quezon City Government website

When you feel the shaking begin, immediately drop down. Cover under a sturdy table or desk and hold on to it until the shaking stops. Be on the lookout for glass windows which might break. Stay away from them and remember the Triangle of Life, an earthquake survival theory that recommends looking for a protective space near solid items. No matter how afraid you are, never close your eyes. You must be aware of what’s happening around you.


4. Stay indoors until the shaking stops.

Stay put wherever you are until the shaking stops. Think of possible escape routes to the safest area where you can walk calmly after the tremor. Ensure you wear reliable footwear if you have to walk on broken glasses caused by the earthquake.


AFTER AN EARTHQUAKE


1. Check yourself and others for injury.



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Check on yourself and others for injury.

Image: Pexels

After the shaking stops, inspect yourself and others while remembering your escape plan. Act immediately while practicing safety and caring for injured persons who need quick attention. Provide necessary help if you are trained or authorized. If trapped in a building, get your first aid kit or use your phone to call for assistance. Wait for instructions from the persons in charge before leaving the area.


2. Search for the fastest and safest exit.



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Calmly go to the emergency exit to evacuate.

Image: Pexels

Reach for the fastest and safest exit of the building or office area. Beware of collapsing walls and falling debris on your way out, and always protect your head with your hands while going outside. Ensure you wear durable shoes to keep your feet from getting injured. As much as possible, avoid passing through damaged areas. Use the stairs instead of the elevator and evacuate calmly. Don’t forget to grab your 72-hour go bag.


3. Expect aftershocks.

After the shaking stops, it is safe to assume that aftershocks might follow. Please tune in to the local radio station and wait for the authorities’ advisory on what to do, where to evacuate, and when it is safe to go home. Immediately move on to higher areas and government-designated evacuation centers in case of a tsunami alert.


4. Call your loved ones using a cellphone.

Once you have made sure you’re safe, call your loved ones and tell them about your situation. Immediately ask for help from the authorities if they are trapped in an unlikely position. You can dial 911, the emergency hotline recently launched in the Philippines.


5. Watch or listen to the news.

If the internet is still accessible, watch or listen to the news to get updates regarding the earthquake. If not, it is a must to prepare a portable radio different from your cellphone, which you can bring anywhere in case you need to evacuate to a safer area. Wait for instructions and information from people in authority and follow them accordingly.

No technology has yet been invented to predict earthquakes. But we can save lives through preparation and arming ourselves with the right knowledge on proper disaster management.


Don't miss out on valuable safety tips and guides! Yoorekka Magazine has got you covered. Visit now to stay informed and protected.


This article was initially published in Yoorekka on August 23, 2017.


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About Karen Grace Libao
Karen writes for a living and for fun. She started her writing career in 2014 when she worked as Content Manager for a women’s website and never looked back since. On her free time, she tries to catch up on her current reads, seeing independently-produced films, watching theatre plays, and attending live music and open mic gigs. She dreams of becoming a published writer and film producer in the future.
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Disclaimer: All articles in the Consumers Magazine of Yoorekka are for general information and entertainment purposes only. Although careful research has been made in writing them, Yoorekka does not make any warranty about the completeness and accuracy of all information presented in our articles. Our content is not intended to be used in place of legal, medical, or any professional advice.
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