When you buy a home, you want it to be your haven, somewhere you feel safe and sound. However natural calamities like earthquakes are inescapable and can happen anytime, anywhere. Moreover Bangladesh is located in an area prone to earthquakes. To arm you against the onslaughts of this natural disaster, here is a list of earthquake safety tips to ensure you are well prepared when earthquake strikes.
What to do before an earthquake?
Choose a gathering point for your family:
A vital earthquake safety tip is selecting a location where you and your family members will meet up after an earthquake occurs so that if you are at separate places you can reunite in that spot. You can draw out a location map and keep it with all family members so they remember the point of gathering.
Have an earthquake safety kit:
A well-stocked first-aid kit should be part of your earthquake safety kit to help you in common injuries and emergencies. Keep at least one first-aid kit in your home and one in your car. You should periodically check that the first aid box has all the contents necessary for an emergency. Other things to keep in your earthquake safety kit are flashlights, fresh batteries, water bottle.
Learn how to turn off your utilities:
One of the important earthquake safety tips is learning beforehand how to turn off the electricity, gas and water at the main switch and valves. This is because earthquakes can result in fire hazards from damaged lines. Also keeping a fire extinguisher handy and knowing how to use it is a very useful tip for earthquake safety in case a fire starts.
Arrange furniture and objects strategically:
It is very likely during heavy earthquake for objects and furniture to topple over which can injure you. Strategically place furniture and objects to prevent this. For example, keep your bed away from windows that can break and hurt you. Do not place objects like vase or photo frames on upper shelf that can easily fall down during an earthquake.
What to do during an earthquake?
The basic earthquake safety procedure is to –
DROP — DROP to the floor.
COVER — Take COVER under a heavy piece of furniture so that it will not collapse on you. and protect your head and neck with your arms or stand under a beam that is strong enough to withstand earthquake.
HOLD — Hold onto the furniture or beam until earthquake stops and it is safe for you to move.
Earthquake safety tips for home:
If you are indoors stay away from breakable objects like a window, chandeliers, mirrors that can injure you. Stay indoors and do not use elevators since they will be stuck.
Earthquake safety tips for outdoors:
If you are driving, park the car and stay inside the car until earthquake stops. Try to park the car away from power lines or overheads so that they do not fall over and hurt you. Avoid bridges, overpasses, underpasses, buildings or anything that could collapse.
If you are outdoors, stay in an open space, away from buildings, trees or power lines that can fall over and hurt you.
What to do after an earthquake?
Ensure everyone is safe:
Check yourself and everybody for injuries and provide first aid to those who need it and if someone is badly injured call for an ambulance.
Inspect for fire hazards:
Fire hazards are a potential aftermath of earthquakes. Do not use matches, candles or any flames. If there is a fire outbreak, use fire extinguisher and notify your nearest fire brigade. Get out as soon as possible if the fire is not limited to a small area. Damaged gas and power lines are also potential sources of fire hazards. If you smell gas which has a sulfur like or rotten egg smell, leave the building. And switch off your main electricity line if there is a short circuit. Do not go back until concerned authorities have come and restored the utilities.
Stay away from debris or broken glass:
Another important item in earthquake safety checklist is keeping away from debris, broken glass and damaged buildings which can injure you. Wear boots or sturdy shoes to avoid cutting your feet. Also wear gloves and protective eye wears to protect you from broken glass or debris.
Be prepared for aftershocks:
Although aftershocks are less strong than the main shock, they may cause additional damage. Do not go out until there is an emergency.
At bti, quality is of utmost importance and it takes great care in construction of building following all standard operating procedures and procuring materials from reputed manufacturers to ensure your home is a safe haven for you. The purpose of this article is mainly to be informative to make you aware of earthquake safety tips so you know how to act in case you find yourself or someone close to you in such a situation.