California has more than 500 active faults and most residents in the Golden State live within 30 miles of one, according the California Earthquake Authority. So it’s critical you’re prepared as the “Big One” can happen at any moment. Earthquakes wreak havoc and faults don’t need to be in your neighborhood to damage it. Use these precautionary steps to get your home and family ready for the next earthquake.
An earthquake can happen at any moment. It’s not a matter of if, but when, so you have to be prepared!
1. Secure Dangerous and Fragile Items
Identify items in your home that could hurt you should they fall or start a fire. Then begin to find ways to keep those items in place. See how at www.earthquakecountry.org/step1/.
2. Create a Plan
Know how to access and turnoff utilities like your gas and water supplies with the appropriate wrench. Practice, practice, practice!
3. Create an Earthquake Kit
Have an earthquake kit for your home, car and work. Check and replenish annually.
4. Home Inventory
Create a home inventory list with pictures and videos, as well as details on the types of building materials used in your home, and upload this information to a secure cloud storage site for easy access.
5. Ensure Your Home is Earthquake Ready
Consult a professional to ensure your building’s potential weak spots are strengthened so your home can withstand an earthquake.
6. Buy Earthquake Insurance
Purchase an earthquake insurance policy through your Mercury Insurance agent.
7. Drop, Cover and Hold On
When the ground begins to shake remember to drop, find cover, such as a dining table or desk and hold on. Do not stand in a doorway as you will not be sufficiently protected.
8. After the Quake
Check for injuries and damage. Use your whistle or repeatedly knock three times if you’re trapped inside. Stay clear of the damage.
9. Follow Your Plan
Move to your predetermined safe place outside your home where you plan to meet with family or housemates. Call your out-of-area contact to relay your status to your friends and family members. Turn on the radio to get updates.
10. Report Any Damage
Call Mercury Insurance Claims at (800) 503-3724 to report any damage. Do not move or remove debris and damaged property related to your claim.