After an Earthquake

  • If you are away from home, return only when authorities say it is safe to do so.
  • After an earthquake, the disaster may continue. Expect and prepare for potential aftershocks or landslides.
  • Check on neighbors, friends and family members after an emergency.Safety shut-off valves should stop the flow of gas when they sense a problem. If you are unsure whether you have an automatic shut-off valve on your natural gas or propane system, contact your local gas or propane company.
  • Look for and extinguish small fires. Fire is the most common hazard after an earthquake.
  • Use extreme caution during post-disaster clean-up. Do not attempt to remove heavy debris by yourself. Wear protective clothing, including a long-sleeved shirt, long pants, work gloves, and sturdy, thick-soled shoes.
What if I'm trapped under debris?
  • Do not use matches or a lighter to assist with visibility.
  • Cover your mouth with a handkerchief or clothing.
  • Tap on a pipe or wall so rescuers can find you.
  • Shout only as a last resort – shouting can cause you to inhale dangerous amounts of dust.