Residents of Ridgecrest, CA won’t soon forget this past July 4th weekend. It started with a magnitude 6.4 earthquake but that was only the beginning. The July 4 shaker turned out to be the precursor to a larger, 7.1 magnitude temblor the next day.

Remarkably—considering the size and power of these two earthquakes—damage was minimal, and there were no fatalities. But this won’t always be the case. Ridgecrest has newer and more resilient buildings than most California cities. If the 7.1 quake occurred near a larger city with more susceptible structures, like San Francisco, the U.S. Geological Survey estimates that it could kill 800 people and injure another 18,000.

Are you and your employees prepared for an earthquake of this scale? If there’s anything we know about earthquakes in California, it is that we’ll have more. We just don’t know when or where.

Earthquake preparation in three parts

A portion of Highway 178 in Ridgecrest, following two major earthquakes in early July.

Knowing what to do in case of an earthquake can protect your employees and your business from devastating loss. So, before the next earthquake rattles California, get your employees together to discuss and train on an earthquake plan for your workplace. And, that preparation should include what to do before, during, and after an earthquake. Some of those steps include:

  • Before: Secure items to the walls, store heavy items at low heights, keep doors and exits clear, and practice earthquake response procedures.
  • During: Drop, cover, and hold on.
  • After: Make sure everyone is okay, evacuate if necessary, and prepare for aftershocks.

Don’t wait for the next big earthquake to hit California to practice earthquake preparedness. It might be too late. Get ready now to have the best chance of protecting your business and your employees.

The above evaluations and/or recommendations are for general guidance only and should not be relied upon for medical advice or legal compliance purposes. They are based solely on the information provided to us and relate only to those conditions specifically discussed. We do not make any warranty, expressed or implied, that your workplace is safe or healthful or that it complies with all laws, regulations or standards.