Earthquake: Duck, Cover, Hold
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Earthquake: Duck, Cover, Hold

It is important to know how to protect yourself and your family during an earthquake no matter where you happen to be when it occurs. It is also important to practice the things you will need to do during and after an earthquake.

  • Learn the safest places in your home and work and practice taking cover as if there were an earthquake.
  • Practice getting out of your home and check to see if the planned exits are clear or if they could become blocked in an earthquake.
  • Practice turning off your electricity and water. Know how to turn off the gas, but do not practice this step. (Once you turn off your gas, only your utility company should turn it back on for safety reasons.)


When in a HIGH-RISE BUILDING, move against an interior wall if you are not near a desk or table. Protect your head and neck with your arms. Do not use the elevators.

When OUTDOORS, move to a clear area away from trees, signs, buildings, or downed electrical wires and poles.

When on a SIDEWALK NEAR BUILDINGS, duck into a doorway to protect yourself from falling bricks, glass, plaster and other debris.

When DRIVING, pull over to the side of the road and stop. Avoid overpasses and power lines. Stay inside your vehicle until the shaking stops.

When in a CROWDED STORE OR OTHER PUBLIC PLACE, move away from display shelves containing objects that could fall. Do not rush for the exit.

When in a STADIUM OR THEATER, stay in your seat, get below the level of the back of the seat and cover your head and neck with your arms.

DUCK or DROP down on the floor.

Take COVER under a sturdy desk, table or other furniture. If that is not possible, seek cover against an interior wall and protect your head and neck with your arms. Avoid danger spots near windows, hanging objects, mirrors or tall furniture.

on to it and be prepared to move with it. Hold the position until the ground stops shaking and it is safe to move.

City Hall - 610 Foster City Blvd.
Foster City, CA 94404
(650) 286-3200