Preparing For An Earthquake: How To Ensure Your Safety

In California, earthquakes are a common occurrence. While a majority of earthquakes are so minor that they mostly go unnoticed, the potential for a large one to strike could happen at any moment. Being prepared for these natural disasters can save and protect yourself, your family, and your home.

At South Coast Medical, keeping our community healthy and safe is a priority. Our knowledgeable staff is able to help you prepare for emergencies that could put you and your family at risk.

It is important to take the proper precautions to minimize any harm that can occur during an earthquake.

Here’s how to stay safe when the ground starts shaking:

Create An Emergency Supply Kit

If a major earthquake occurs, there is a chance that basic services such as electricity, gas, water, sewer, and telephone may be out. Keep an emergency kit that everyone in the household can easily locate.

Include these items in your earthquake emergency kit:

  • Portable Containers
  • Water
  • Food
  • Extra Cash
  • Medication
  • Battery-operated radio
  • Flashlight
  • Extra batteries
  • First Aid

Along with your emergency kit, be sure to have important documents handy. Have a few copies of addresses, phone numbers, and evacuation sites for each household member.

Be Ready, Wherever You Are

Because earthquakes can happen at any time, it’s important to have a safety plan in place beforehand. There are different risk factors in each environment that require a specific action to stay out of harm.

In the car

If you are driving, pull over, stop, and set your parking brake. Avoid overpasses, bridges, power lines, trees, signs, buildings, vehicles, and other objects that may fall on your car.


The most important thing to do when indoors is to take cover. Be prepared to hold on until the shaking stops. Stay inside until the earthquake stops, and it is safe to exit. Stay away from windows, light fixtures, bookcases, and other furniture that can fall on you. If you are inside a high-rise, drop, cover, and hold on. Do not use elevators, and be prepared for sprinkler systems and fire alarms to activate.


If you are outdoors during an earthquake, drop down to the ground in a clear spot away from buildings, trees, and power lines.

Know What To Do Afterwards

What happens after an earthquake is just as important. Earthquakes are commonly followed by aftershocks that range in magnitude. These aftershocks can create even more damage to structures that have already been affected by the original earthquake.

When the earthquake is over, make sure your environment is safe enough to move around. If you are indoors, be mindful of opening cabinets if objects have fallen over. It’s important to inspect your home for utility issues such as gas leaks and electrical system damage. Stay away from damaged areas outdoors, especially when driving.

When earthquakes occur, being prepared is a key factor in avoiding potential dangers.

For the past 20 years, our doors have been open every day of the week to provide immediate care for communities in Aliso Viejo, Laguna Niguel, Laguna Hills, Laguna Niguel, and Mission Viejo when they most need it.  

If you have a non-life threatening emergency, come into our office, and our staff will gladly address your concerns. No appointment is needed for our Urgent Care services.