Gov. McAuliffe proclaims Oct. 16 as Earthquake ShakeOut Day

October 9, 2014  //  

VDEM Press Release

10501 Trade Court
Richmond, Virginia 23226


October 9, 2014

CONTACT: Dawn Eischen
(804) 897-9730 or (804) 674-2400

Gov. McAuliffe proclaims Oct. 16 as Earthquake ShakeOut Day

Virginians can still sign up for annual earthquake drill

RICHMOND, Va. – Nearly 1.1 million Virginians have signed up for the Great SouthEast ShakeOut, a multistate earthquake drill set for Oct. 16 at 10:16 a.m. To encourage participation, Gov. Terry McAuliffe has proclaimed the date Earthquake ShakeOut Day.

The annual earthquake drill provides Virginians with the opportunity to learn what to do when an earthquake hits. In the U.S., people should not run down stairs or outside during an earthquake. Instead, emergency management and preparedness experts agree that DROP, COVER AND HOLD ON is the safest response to reduce injuries and deaths:

  • DROP to the ground (before the shaking drops you)
  • Take COVER under a sturdy desk or table if possible, protecting your head and neck
  • HOLD ON to the desk or table until the shaking stops

The Great SouthEast ShakeOut is open to everyone: individuals, families, businesses, organizations, government agencies, and schools and colleges.

To register, go to or, where information about how to hold a drill is available. Those who can’t participate Oct. 16 can hold an earthquake drill any time through Dec. 31 and still register to be part of the ShakeOut.

More than 1.8 million people have signed up so far for the Great SouthEast ShakeOut to be held in these states: Delaware, Georgia, South Carolina, North Carolina, West Virginia, Maryland, Virginia and Washington, D.C. When compared to all states participating in the national drill, Virginia is second only to California in number of people who have registered.

Coordinating partners for the Great SouthEast ShakeOut include the Central U.S. Earthquake Consortium, the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) and the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS). ShakeOut originated in California, where statewide earthquake drills have been held annually since 2008, and has grown to be an international program with nearly 25 million people participating in 2013.


Additional Resources:
Read Gov. McAuliffe’s proclamation here:

Get earthquake safety actions here:

For those with disabilities or other access or functional needs:

“When the Earth Shakes” animated video:

Get more information about the Great SouthEast ShakeOut:

Be ready. Be willing to help.

Virginia Disaster Relief Fund