Earthquake Disaster Preparedness Before an earthquake Prepare an emergency kit.Fasten shelves securely; place large or heavy objects on lower shelves.Heavy wall items should be attached securely and away from beds, couches, or anywhere people might be underneath.Brace overhead light fixtures and top-heavy lamps.Have defective electrical wiring and leaky gas connections repaired by a qualified professional.Secure your water heater, refrigerator, furnace, and gas appliances with strapping or bolting. If recommended by your gas company, have an automatic vibration shut-off valve installed.Repair any existing cracks in the ceiling or foundation; check often for structural defects.Store your weed killers, pesticides, and flammable products on bottom shelves in closed cabinets with a latch.Hold family earthquake drills and review your family communications plan. During an earthquake No matter where you are, DROP, COVER and HOLD ON!Move as little as possible - most injuries during earthquakes occur because of people moving around and falling.Stay indoors until the shaking stops and you are sure it is safe to exit.Be aware that smoke alarms and sprinkler systems frequently go off in buildings during an earthquake, even if there is no fire.If you smell gas, get out of the house and move as far away as possible.If you must leave a building, wait until the shaking stops. Use the stairs rather than an elevator in case of aftershocks, power outages or other damage.Before you leave any building, check to make sure that there is no debris from the building that could fall on you.If you are outside during an earthquake:Try to get as far away from buildings, power lines, trees, and streetlights as possible.If you're in a vehicle, pull over to a clear location and stop. Avoid bridges, overpasses and power lines if possible.Stay inside your vehicle with your seat belt fastened until the shaking stops.If a power line falls on your vehicle, do not get out. Wait for assistance.If you are in a mountainous area or near unstable slopes or cliffs, watch for falling rocks and landslides.