Registration Swells to 7.9 Million for 5th Annual Great California ShakeOut

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Inspiration for Worldwide “Drop, Cover, and Hold On” Drill on 10/18 at 10:18 a.m.

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“A 'Big One' is going to come,"

California ShakeOut Registration, now over 7.9 million, is growing daily. On October 18th at 10:18 a.m., more than 9 million people will “Drop, Cover and Hold On” in schools, businesses, organizations, government agencies, neighborhoods and households all across California in the 5th annual “Great California ShakeOut” - the largest earthquake drill in the world.

“A ‘Big One’ is going to come, and when it does, we are committed that Californians be fully prepared to survive the shaking and recover quickly,” said ShakeOut founder Mark Benthien.

Benthien is Director of Communication, Education, and Outreach for the Southern California Earthquake Center (SCEC) at the University of Southern California, and Executive Director of the Earthquake Country Alliance (ECA). The ECA coordinates the California ShakeOut and SCEC coordinates with ShakeOut regions across the U.S. and around the world.

ShakeOut press conferences and activities on October 18th at Union Station in Los Angeles and at San Diego’s Santa Fe Station will focus on what to do if you are on public transportation when a major earthquake strikes. In San Francisco, a Union Square ShakeOut press event will feature a choreographed ShakeOut flash dance, culminating in a mass Drop, Cover and Hold On demonstration. Event details will be available at

ShakeOut drills inform people at schools, work and home about how to prepare for, survive, and recover from the next damaging earthquake.

✦    Preparation messages remind Californians to secure their space, create disaster
                and communications plans, collect and organize disaster supplies, and take steps
                to safeguard their finances by strengthening their property and considering
                earthquake insurance.

✦    Survival messages provide correct techniques for immediate Drop, Cover and Hold
                On responses when the earth starts shaking – and what to do when the shaking
                stops to improve safety by helping the injured, preventing further damage, and
                evacuating from tsunami zones.

✦    Recovery strategies include how to restore daily live by reconnecting with others,
                repairing damage and rebuilding our communities.

ShakeOut participation is free and takes only a few minutes. Information about how to register and participate is found at

“Don’t be left out of the ShakeOut,” Benthien urges.

ShakeOut began as a Southern California drill, quickly spread statewide, throughout the West, and then to the Central and Southeast U.S., as well as to several U.S. Territories, Canada, New Zealand, Japan, and Italy. Additional people and organizations in many other states and countries are also registering independent drills.

“It’s amazing to see how quickly this has become a worldwide movement,” said Benthien. “ShakeOut is a fun and easy way for people, organizations and communities in many regions to get prepared now, together, before major earthquakes.”

More than 10 million participants are expected on 10/18 (including 9 million in California). 4.5 million people participated earlier in 2012 in the Central U.S., Utah, and New Zealand (September 26th). In total more than 15 million people will practice earthquake safety in 2012 as part of the various ShakeOut drills. To register to participate in any of these drills visit

ShakeOut is organized by the Earthquake Country Alliance, a partnership of the Southern California Earthquake Center, California Emergency Management Agency, USGS, California Earthquake Authority, the American Red Cross, and many others.

Extensive information is available for the public and media at

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D'Anne Ousley
California Earthquake Authority
(916) 325-3845
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