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Earthquake preparedness: Steps to strengthen resilience

January 4, 2019

Assembling an earthquake emergency kit and investing in earthquake-resistant structures can help you build resilience to many natural disasters.


How to prepare for an earthquake does not include taking cues from Hollywood movies on the subject. They would have you believe that any state east of California’s San Andreas Fault need not worry about earthquake risk.

Virginia’s magnitude 5.8 earthquake of 2011 proved otherwise, causing millions of dollars in damage to buildings, including the Washington Monument and National Cathedral in Washington, D.C.1

The truth is that all 50 states and five major U.S. territories have the potential to experience an earthquake.2 And unlike many severe weather events, an earth-shaking shift can happen with very little warning — similar to the earthquake in Virginia.

As part of the cost-benefit analyses that executives and risk managers perform daily, considerations should include how earthquake preparedness can help your business and the people connected to it, as well as prepare you for other types of natural disasters, such as tornadoes and hurricanes.

Check out our earthquake safety and preparation guide for a few steps to take before, during and after an earthquake’s rumble. Your resilience may depend on it.

Related Articles

1 Hopewell, John. "Remembering the 2011 Virginia earthquake that rocked the Eastern U.S." The Washington Post. 23 August 2016.
2 U.S. Geological Survey. "Introduction to the National Seismic Hazard Maps." U.S. Geological Survey. Accessed 28 August 2018.