Earthquakes are unpredictable, but there are roughly 10,000 earthquakes reported in southern California every year. Of those earthquakes, just several hundred register a 3.0 magnitude or higher and just 15 to 20 are a 4.0 or higher. You don’t really start to feel earthquakes until they reach a 3.0 magnitude on the Richter scale, but they still cause damage deep underground.
The fault lines in California cut through highly populated areas, and many have been expecting the Big One for years. When a large quake hits, power outages, phone service disruption, transportation halts, and shortage of gas are all possibilities, and there is always the chance a Tsunami.
For those living along earthquake faults lines, an earthquake survival kit is an important necessity, along with knowing what to do immediately following a quake.
What To Do After An Earthquake
- Expect Aftershocks
Do not expect it to be over after the initial earthquake. If you’ve managed to get to a safe place, stay there. After shocks may come in waves, so if you’re near the coast get to higher ground in the event flooding or a Tsunami occurs.
Check For Injuries
Make sure no one is injured, and if so, treat the injury before moving.
If you are still at your home, dress in protective clothing, such as long pants and long sleeve shirts, find a pair of gloves, and wear sneakers or boots.
- Extinguish Fires
Put out any fires that you can using fire extinguishers, if they are nearby.
- Store Water
Fill jugs with water for future use, and fill your bathtub with water for hygienic purposes should you lose water service.
- Check News
Use internet, radio, and television, basically whichever is still in service, to get current news.
- Contact Loved Ones
Make sure family knows where you are.
- Meet Up With Loved Ones
You should have a pre-arranged meeting spot to meet with your loved ones. Get to that spot as soon as you safely can.
Survival Kit List
Those living in earthquake zones should fill a backpack with the following items …
Freeze dried food is the best because it lasts the longest and doesn’t need a can opener. It is also the lightest to carry and you can eat straight from the bag. Go for high calorie options. This is not the time to think of dieting. Pasta meals, chili, stews, are all filling and provide energy. Protein and energy bars are another great choice. Pack enough for 5 days.
Pack these items as well …
A camping stove can save you time in having to build and start a fire. Choose a portable camping stove that folds down, such as the Etekcity, which can be folded into the size of a deck of cards. Attach to a canister for quick ignition.
A light titanium pot is perfect to add to your bag for boiling water and cooking.
- Can Opener
If you are bringing cans of food, make sure to pack that can opener.
- Aluminum Foil
You can use aluminum foil to handle hot pots, kind of like a pot holder, and it has many other uses for cooking over a flame.
Make sure to pack a portable water filtration device. The Saywer Mini is the perfect size, at a great price point, and can filter a lot of water at once.
Stainless steel is your best option, but if you go for plastic, make sure it is BPA free.
- Bivy Blanket
This is a lightweight and smaller alternative to a tent, and can fit into your bag. It fits snugly over a sleeping bag, and protects you from the elements.
- Bivy Blanket
- Sleeping Bag
A sleeping bag will keep your warm and insulated at night.
- Poncho / Liner
Both can keep you dry. The poncho can double as a shelter, and the liner as the floor.
Pack at least two pair or socks and a change of clothes, along with another pair of comfortable shoes, a pair of gloves, and a hat.
- Concealed Fire Arm
If you have a fire arms license, pack your fire arm in your back pack versus a holster. You want to be discreet.
- Concealed Fire Arm
- Full Tang Knife
Make sure to pack a sturdy knife such as the Gerber LMF II or the KA-BAR.
You can add a shotgun as a back up to your other firearm, or as your only firearm. They deploy easily.
- Taser Or Pepper Spray
If you do not have a license to carry, pack some tasers or a pepper spray. They are both small and lightweight, and great against any violent enemies.
- Axe Handle
An axe handle makes a great weapon if you do not have any of the above. Swing hard.
- Baby Wipes
- Hand Sanitizer
- Toilet Paper
- Other Gear And Supplies
- Ham Radio
This is a great way to get news when all other sources of communication go down.
- Ham Radio
- First Aid Kit
Always pack a first aid kit for minor cuts to deep wounds, and even just a headache.
Pack some cash, because banks and ATMs will most likely be down. You credit card will probably do no good for the same reason.
- Spare Eye Glasses
Keep a pair of spare eye glasses in case your regular pair break or your contacts dry out.
- Prescription Medication
If you can get a month’s supply of your regular medications, store it in your bag.