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SSD to Participate in International Great ShakeOut Drill

International ShakeOut Earthquake Drill Thursday October 21, 2021October 18, 2021 - Special School District of St. Louis County will participate in Great ShakeOut earthquake drills on October 21. The drill is part of SSD’s safety and security practices. 

“We all must get better prepared for a major earthquake and how to protect ourselves when it happens,” said Director of Safety and Security John Mueller. “The purpose of the ShakeOut drill is to get people to think about how to react.  You could be anywhere when an earthquake occurs- at work, home, the store, or even on vacation. It’s not a matter of ‘if’ it happens. It is a matter of ‘when’ it happens.”

SSD students and staff will learn and practice “Drop, Cover, and Hold On,” which are the appropriate actions to reduce injury and death during earthquakes. To reduce chances of serious unjust, those in an earthquake should:

  • DROP in place, onto hands and knees. This position protects individuals from being knocked down and allows them to stay low and crawl to nearby shelter.
  • COVER their heads and neck with one arm and hand. Crawl underneath a sturdy table or desk for shelter. If one is not nearby, crawl next to an interior wall that is away from windows. It’s important to stay on your knees and bend over to protect vital organs.
  • HOLD ON until the shaking stops. Hold on to a sturdy shelter with one hand and be ready to move if the shelter shifts.

Earthquake Country has recommendations for people who use wheelchairs, walkers, or are unable to drop to the ground and get up again without assistance.

A key aspect of the ShakeOut is the integration of comprehensive, science-based earthquake research and the lessons learned from decades of social science research about why people get prepared. The result is a ‘teachable moment’ on par with having an actual earthquake (often followed by increased interest in getting ready for earthquakes). ShakeOut creates the sense of urgency that is needed for people, organizations, and communities to get prepared, to practice what to do to be safe, and to learn what plans need to be improved.