One Strap at at Time

“Non Structural Mitigation” is a fancy term for doing what you can to prevent things like furniture, appliances, wall decor, etc. from falling or tipping over during an earthquake. This blog is an ongoing journal by DEM‘ers (and SF72 enthusiasts!) first-hand incremental steps to prevent the big mess that the big one could cause. We’d also love to hear about anything you’ve done to Beat the Quake, so please share here!

The first in this series of “One Strap at a Time” comes to us from Francis Zamora, DEM’s Public Information Officer, Mirolama Park resident, and soon-to-be first-time dad.

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We all have a little bit of “I should” in us.  I should get back to the gym or I should know what does and does not belong in the compost bin by now. For many of us, preparedness is no different: I should be more prepared for an emergency.  While getting back to the gym can be a challenge, there are a lot of quick wins when it comes to preparedness.

Case in point: For months, I’ve been saying I should really secure my TV.  Over the long weekend, I finally did it.  For $19.99, I bought a set of Flat Screen Safety Straps from Home Depot (Aisle 13). They’re also available on Amazon for the same price.

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The next day, I took a quick look at the instructions and used the straps to secure my TV.  It was easy and took less than 10 minutes.  Now I have some piece of mind that I’ve done what I can prevent my TV from falling over during an earthquake, kid-quake, or pet-quake.

For more simple preparedness tips and ideas visit www.SF72.org.

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Golden Gate Bridge Closure Reminds Us to Plan Ahead

Golden Gate BridgeBy now you’ve probably received the word:  The Golden Gate Bridge will be closed to vehicle traffic from 12:01 a.m. Saturday, January 10 to 4:00 a.m. Monday, January 12.  If you had to use the bridge to get to where you are going, then you’ve probably made alternate plans or re-arranged your schedule.  If you haven’t,then we recommend visiting 511.org to see what your options are.

Advanced notice is helpful—it helps you plan ahead.  Emergencies work the same way.  A little planning makes things a little bit easier when the unexpected happens.  So what should your plan include?

Plan SF72

A little foresight can go a long way—make a plan now, so you know how to find and get in touch with your people when something happens. The same connections that are important in everyday life—with friends, family, neighbors, and communities—are even more crucial in a crisis.

Shake Up Call

Last night’s magnitude 6.9 earthquake off of the coast of Eureka, California was reminder that we live in earthquake country.  Thankfully, there were no reports of injuries or damage and the ocean tremor did not generate a tsunami.

Judy was in Tokyo, riding the train to the airport, when the 8.9 Tōhoku earthquake struck. Her immediate reaction was simple: to reach out to her digital networks, and let them know what was happening. Tomorrow, March 11 is the 3rd Anniversary of the Tōhoku earthquake and tsunami.

Earthquakes can happen at any time with little or no warning.  That’s why it’s important to take simple steps now so we’re ready for any emergency.

Get Connected: When disaster strikes, we come together to help each other. Getting prepared is about knowing your neighbors, saying hi to the regulars at the local market, and staying in touch with family and friends—both digitally and in person.

Gather Supplies: Whether you’re just starting out or a preparedness pro, gathering your emergency supplies is easy. A good rule of thumb is to have supplies for about 3 days, or 72 hours. You’ll be surprised at how much you already have.

Make a Plan with your People: A little foresight can go a long way—make a plan now, so you know how to find and get in touch with your people when something happens. The same connections that are important in everyday life—with friends, family, neighbors, and communities—are even more crucial in a crisis.

For more information visit www.sf72.org.  SF72 is your hub for emergency preparedness. You’ll find information about what to do in an emergency, simple steps to get connected, and useful guides to help you get prepared.

20 Years Ago: The Northridge Earthquake

1994 Northridge Earthquake

1994 Northridge Earthquake (FEMA NEWS PHOTO)

San Franciscans stand with our fellow Californians by remembering the 1994 Northridge Earthquake.  We remember the lives that were lost and those that were changed.  The magnitude 6.7 quake caused $25 billion in damage and was the costliest U.S. natural disaster at the time.  Northridge was a not so subtle reminder that we live in earthquake country (Universal City residents received a more subtle reminder this morning).  The 20th Anniversary of the Northridge Earthquake is also about saluting the resilient people that rebuilt their community and worked hard to return to normal life.

More Prepared

Whether you’re just starting out or a preparedness pro, gathering your emergency supplies and planning ahead is easy. A good rule of thumb is to have supplies for about 3 days, or 72 hours. You’ll be surprised at how much you already have. Take simple steps today on www.sf72.org to prepare and plan for any emergency.

Ready for more?  SFDEM encourages you to work with our partners to get even better prepared as a household, neighborhood, or community.

American Red Cross Bay Area Chapter provides a variety of training including first aid, CPR, and how to prepare for emergencies.

Neighborhood Empowerment Network equips SF neighborhoods with tools and programs designed to create safe, clean, and economically resilient communities.

San Francisco Neighborhood Emergency Response Team teaches emergency preparedness and response basics through free hands-on training so you are ready to take care of yourself and others.

Finally, the Earthquake Safety Implementation Program is hosting an Earthquake Retrofit Fair to help people put some backbone into San Francisco’s soft story buildings that can be vulnerable when the ground starts shaking.

Progressive Preparedness is so San Francisco

We believe in connection, not catastrophe.

Here’s the thing: actual emergencies look more like people coming together than cities falling apart. And people who are more connected fare better in times of crisis.

By building connections and preparing for emergencies before something happens to the city we love, we can act swiftly, safely, and efficiently. And we can get through that first 72 hours, as a community. This is what it means to prepare…progressively.

Please join us this fall as we take San Francisco on a new kind of preparedness journey— a journey that has no interest in a looming disaster as the reason to get prepared, but rather the peace of mind that comes from taking some simple steps to be better prepared in the face of any emergency—big or small. And the resilience that comes from being a part of a prepared and connected San Francisco community.

Check out our San Francisco Progressive Preparedness Manifesto video

What to look for from us this fall.

Throughout September and October we’ll be sharing progressive preparedness tips on our social media platforms (@em4sf and our DEM Facebook page).  We hope you’ll follow us, add these tips to your preparedness know-how, and share the info with your family, friends, neighbors, colleagues…anyone you care about.

We’ll also be sharing with you events and other opportunities to progressively prepare with with your San Francisco community—one of highlighted importance being the statewide earthquake drill: ShakeOut taking place October 17th at 10:17 am. We hope you participate (and get counted) by registering yourself, household and/or workplace via www.shakeout.org, where you can also learn more about the drop, cover and hold on drill along with other neat ways to progressively prepare for an earthquake.

Lastly, on October 17th, which also is the 24th anniversary of the Loma Prieta earthquake, we’ll be unveiling our progressive preparedness integration platform (yes, we’re sounding vague yet hopefully intriguing on purpose), so stay tuned!

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