Friday, October 11, 2013

Schools to join state Thursday in Great Shakeout

For the past couple of years, San Diego schools have "experienced" a 7.8 magnitude earthquake each October. Are fault lines and shifting tectonic plates to blame for this annual phenomenon? No, it’s just the state Office of Emergency Services’ Great California ShakeOut, an annual statewide disaster exercise.

duck and cover This Thursday, Oct. 17, schools and worksites across the district are scheduled to again "drop, cover, and hold" when at the appointed time, 10:17 a.m. The district’s participation in the drill is being coordinated by our School Police Services.

“Student safety is our priority at San Diego Unified ,” said Superintendent Cindy Marten. “Through proper preparation with events like ShakeOut, our students, teachers and all employees can learn what to do during an earthquake to ensure that everyone remains safe. ”

If asked, many locals would likely say that wildfires pose a more severe threat to our city than earthquakes do. While the San Andreas and San Jacinto Faults are more than 60 miles away from highly populated areas, San Diego is sitting on a major fault, Rose Canyon, that cuts right through the heart of downtown.

All district schools and worksites have emergency response plans in place and are prepared should an earthquake or other disaster strike during school hours. Schools routinely practice emergency drills, including earthquake and fire. With the devastating earthquake and tsunami that struck Japan still in recent memory, it is now more important than ever for San Diegans to be prepared for the “Big One.”

In addition to being prepared at school and work, it’s important for families to have their own earthquake preparedness plan. All San Diegans are encouraged to participate by registering at . Learn more on how to prepare for an earthquake or other disasters by visiting . For more information on your school's or worksite’s emergency response plan, check with your site administrator.