SPRINGFIELD – More than 152,000 Illinois residents have already registered to participate in a multi-state earthquake drill, and the Illinois Emergency Management Agency (IEMA) is encouraging even more groups and individuals to join in the second annual “Great Central U.S. ShakeOut” on Feb. 7.
“With the New Madrid and Wabash Valley seismic zones located in Southern Illinois, it’s important for people to know how to stay safe if a major earthquake occurs,” said IEMA Director Jonathon Monken. “The Great Central U.S. ShakeOut will be the perfect opportunity for families, businesses, schools and other groups to practice the ‘Drop, Cover and Hold On’ protective actions they should take during an earthquake.”
Monken explained that the slogan “Drop, Cover and Hold On” reminds people to “Drop” down to the floor, take “Cover” under a sturdy desk, table or other furniture, and “Hold On” to the furniture item and be prepared to move with it until the shaking ends.
More than 1.2 million people in nine states currently are registered to participate in the Shakeout drill, which will begin at 10:15 a.m. on Feb. 7. Last April, more than 250,000 Illinois residents participated in the first ShakeOut drill in the Central U.S.
Schools, businesses, government agencies, families and others can register to participate in the drill at http://www.shakeout.org/centralus. Registered participants will receive additional information about the drill and earthquake preparedness.
“The Great Central U.S. ShakeOut” drill is being organized by the Central United States Earthquake Consortium (CUSEC), which includes members from states impacted by the New Madrid Seismic Zone. Other partners include state and local emergency management agencies, the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), Citizen Corps, U.S. Geological Survey, the American Red Cross and other public and private entities.
Besides Illinois, other states participating in the drill include Alabama, Arkansas, Indiana, Kentucky, Mississippi, Missouri, Oklahoma, and Tennessee.
Additional information about the earthquake risk in Illinois and steps to take before, during and after an earthquake is available at www.Ready.Illinois.gov.