Emergency backpack and equipment being organized on a table.

The New Year Means its Time to Review Your Emergency Plans

We often mark the start of a new year to make changes, try new things, and say goodbye to old habits and difficulties. 

But the new year can also serve as a reminder to review your long-term planning and preparation, including assessing emergency plans. 

For Californians, one of the constant risks to be ready for is earthquakes. 

If you don’t know where to start regarding earthquake preparedness, The Los Angeles Times put together a series called “Unshaken” on earthquake readiness and resilience.

An easy place to start preparing is on your smartphone. Do you have an earthquake alert app downloaded? 

The MyShake app from the UC Berkeley Seismology Lab issues earthquake early warning alerts for California and Oregon. 

While alert apps won’t predict when and where an earthquake will strike, the warning should give you enough time to drop, cover, and hold on somewhere safe.

The LA Times reviewed MyShake and nine other similar apps last year.

Another easy step, pull together a go-bag. Gather basic items such as extra clothes, bottles of water, flashlights, a first-aid kit, and more in an easy-to-carry bag. You probably have a number of these items sitting around already. This kit can be handy for other potential emergencies too, such as wildfires. 

And don’t forget about your finances. It’s a good idea to have some cash stashed in your house to fill up a tank of gas (subject to power disruptions), buy food and water for a few days, and purchase other immediate necessities, such as batteries.

Check out some additional recommendations for Present-Day Disaster Preparedness.

For more tips to help get earthquake resilient, check out the LA Times “Unshaken” series, which includes dishes you can make with those canned food supplies at https://www.latimes.com/topic/unshaken (subscription may be required).