20 things to do to prepare before the next earthquake hits Southern California

Items that fell of a shelf in the Bingham home in Fullerton Friday evening near the intersection of N Gilbert St and Rosecrans on March 28, 2014.
Items that fell of a shelf in the Bingham home in Fullerton Friday evening near the intersection of N Gilbert St and Rosecrans on March 28, 2014. Stuart Palley/KPCC

Friday's 5.1-magnitude earthquake, and the smaller one in Encino last week, served as a reminder that we live in a seismically active region. Here are 20 suggestions from the U.S. Geological Survey on how to prepare for the next quake.

  • Hang plants in lightweight pots with closed hooks.
  • Install strong latches on kitchen cabinets.
  • Use flexible connections where gas lines meet appliances.
  • Secure valuable electronics items such as computers and televisions.
  • Keep breakables in low or secure cabinets with latches.
  • Hang mirrors and pictures on closed hooks. 
  • Keep heavy, unstable objects away from doors and exit routes.
  • Place bed away from windows or items that may fall.
  • Secure knick knacks and other small valuables with museum putty.
  • Brace overhead light fixtures.
  • Place only light weight or soft items over bed.
  • Secure top-heavy furniture to wall studs.
  • Secure water heater with metal straps attached to wall studs.
  • Store an ABC-type fire extinguisher in easily accessible location.
  • Keep several flashlights in easily accessible places around the house.
  • Keep a wrench or turn-off tool in water proof wrap near gas meter.
  • Know the location of your main fuse box or circuit breaker.
  • Keep slippers and gloves next to beds.
  • Keep an emergency backpack with copies of important documents near the door to grab and go. 
  • Store emergency food and water supplies in a dry, accessible area. Include a first aid kit, extra cash, portable radio, extra batteries, medications and other necessary supplies. 
     
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