Off-Ramp

Off-Ramp host John Rabe and contributors share thoughts on arts, culture, and life in L.A.

Good question: Can apartment dwellers prepare for the Big One?

Last weekend, John Rabe and KPCC producer/disaster preparedness expert Christal Smith went to Scott Sanger's Southland home to talk about how homeowners can be better prepared for a catastrophic earthquake. But if and when a quake like that hits, homes won't be the only structures affected. That thought made listener Elizabeth Conde ask:

My family's condo is entirely on the second floor, so any supplies I stockpile would most likely not be accessible if we have to evacuate, or if the building is red tagged. Is there a plan for all us condo / apartment dwellers? What do the experts think?

Christal responds:

Yet another deterrent to disaster preparation is the tricky question of where it makes the most sense to stow supplies. One solution is to keep everything in your car with the idea that you will always have that nearby. Ideally you would have two kits, a car kit (with car specific items such as heavy duty booster cables, w/vinyl coated  clamps an air compressor with gauge, cable ties, and a utility tool in addition to standard kit contents such as food, water, blanket, poncho, flashlight and radio) and a "go bag" that you can keep near the main door of your home with the basic supplies. Personally I have a kit in my car, one on the ground floor of my apartment near the rear door, and a small kit in my desk at work along with an extra pair of walking shoes.

Wherever you decide to keep it, make sure everyone in your household knows where it is and that you have a family evacuation plan in place as well.

Stay tuned for this weekend's Off-Ramp, where John will do a follow up with Christal to find out more!

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