Over the past few weeks there has been a lot of discussion around the likelihood of a major earthquake in the Pacific Northwest. The original article in the New Yorker describes many scientists certainty that the massive quake is coming and will raise Seattle and Portland to the ground with a massive 100ft high tsunami. This article made me question my own families safety and how we could be better prepared.
The following is a list of the top 5 changes that you can make to be ready for such a disaster.
- Structural integrity
Although making a tsunami proof home is impossible, you can make your home more protected from floods. This can be achieved through several steps. The first step is fix your window and door seals. This is where the initial flood waters will enter a structure. It will begin with a simple damp spot. The wall will weaken then a total section collapse will follow. I saw this during hurricane Katrina. The homes with poor window and door seals had a 60% higher fail rate than those with solid seals.
- Get a Pet
Have you ever seen videos where animals begin to flee an area prior to a major natural disaster? In an earthquake, initial rounds of seismic waves are released which can be detected by many animals, mainly those with migratory instincts. Getting a pet can give an early warning system with up to 2 minutes of prior notice.
- Emergency Dry Bag
Keeping a dry bag with an emergency set of dry warm clothing can save your life. If you are in a tsunami prone area and one happens to strike there is a high likelihood of loosing your home. In the initial aftermath you will likely be soaked and highly susceptible to hypothermia. Having a set of dry clothing will help to improve your likelihood of survival.
- Buy Flare Gun
Should you be washed out to sea your likelihood of survival may look slim. One of the best ways to improve your chances of survival is to have a flare gun. This will allow you to greatly improve your visibility and hopefully attract a rescue team.
- Have A Plan
This is the most important factor in survival. Having a solid plan will allow you and your family to make fewer decisions and be faster. The faster you can react the quicker you gen get out of harms way. Every second counts, are you ready?