What is an Earthquake?

An earthquake is an event in which the energy that suddenly emerges as a result of fractures in the earth's crust spreads in waves and shakes the environments they pass through and the earth's surface. Earthquakes can be so small that they cannot be felt, or they can be large enough to destroy cities. Earthquakes can cause tsunamis, continental drift and volcanic activity. [1]

What is an Earthquake?

Precautions to be Taken Before an Earthquake

Home Precautions
Shelves should be well fixed to the wall. Large and heavy objects should be placed on lower shelves. Fragile objects should be placed in closed cabinets.

Heavy objects hanging on the wall, mirrors, should be hung and secured away from the bed and where people are sitting.

Chandeliers should be fixed and reinforced. Electrical cables and natural gas lines where there is a risk of fire should be repaired.

Fly killer, chemical or flammable products should be placed in separate and secure cabinets.

Determining Safe Zones in Indoor and Outdoor Areas
Sturdy, durable tables and similar furniture should be identified.

Plan how to avoid windows, mirrors, heavy bookcases and heavy furniture that may tip over.

In open areas, areas away from buildings, power lines, overpasses and trees should be identified.

Emergency Bag
An emergency kit should be prepared for easy access at home or at work. It should contain a flashlight, battery-powered radio and spare batteries, first aid kit, pocket knife, whistle, small scissors, water, high-calorie foods, medicines and essential medicines, hygiene materials, clothing, money and credit cards, important documents. [1]

Earthquake Moment

What to Do During an Earthquake

I. Inside the Building

  1. We should definitely not panic. We should stay away from unfixed cabinets, shelves, windows, etc. If available, we should crouch or lie down under the table supported by chairs or next to objects that can provide protection such as full and voluminous armchairs, sofas, full chests. We should protect our head by taking it between both hands or with a protective material (pillow, book, etc.). We should wait until the tremor passes.
  2. If we are in a wheelchair, we should protect our head and neck by locking the wheels.
  3. In places where there are work tools such as kitchens, workshops, laboratories; we should turn off the stove, oven and such devices. We should move away from materials and substances that may spill. We should protect ourselves as stated in the first article.
  4. After the tremor passes, we should turn off electricity, gas and water valves. Turn off stoves and heaters. We should take other safety precautions and take the emergency bag prepared in advance and the necessary items and materials with us and immediately leave the building on the path we have previously determined and go to the gathering area.
  5. We should move away from stairs, balconies, corridors and wide areas, columns and windows.
  6. If we are in school, we should stay in the classroom and protect our heads under the desks or next to the desks as stated in the first article.
  7. We should definitely not use the elevator. If we are in the elevator, we should leave the elevator by pressing the floor exit button.

II. Outside the building

  1. We should move away from power lines, other buildings and the undersides of walls. In open areas, we should crouch down and be prepared for hazards from the environment.
  2. We should move away from the coast.
  3. We should not be under slopes where landslides, stones or rocks may fall. If we are in such an environment, we should move to a safe place as soon as possible.
  4. We should be cautious against chimneys, broken glass and plaster that may fall from buildings.
  5. We should be careful against dangers from underground sewage, electricity and gas lines.

III. When Driving

  1. If it is safe to do so, we should stop and stay in the vehicle. If the vehicle is traveling on the highway; we should pull over to the right and stop without blocking the road. We should leave the ignition key in place and wait inside the vehicle with the windows closed.After the earthquake stops, we should move to open areas.
  2. We should get as far away as possible from normal traffic, trees, poles and power lines.
  3. If the vehicle is in a residential area or not in a safe place, we should stop the vehicle, leave the ignition key in the ignition, get out of the vehicle and move to open areas.

Drop, Cover, Hold on

Precautions to be Taken After an Earthquake

  1. We should definitely not panic.
  2. When the tremor stops, we should immediately leave the place we are in through the predetermined ways and go to the assembly point by taking the disaster bag we have prepared in advance and other materials (such as clothes, blankets, water and food) that will be needed urgently with us.
  3. We should assist those who need help in the collapsed buildings in rescue, first aid and debris removal works.
  4. We should be cautious against the possibility of a second tremor.
  5. We should not occupy telephone lines.
  6. We should not obstruct traffic on the roads as the sick and injured will be transported.
  7. We should not believe rumors and gossip about the earthquake.
  8. We should be in solidarity with each other in the family. We should especially take children away from the impact of the event.
  9. During rescue and social assistance, we should help the concerned and officials without causing panic and chaos.
  10. If the building is damaged, we should wait at least one hour to enter. We should act in line with the announcement of the relevant authorities.
  11. In coastal areas, we should move away from the sea in case of huge waves.
  12. We should strictly follow the rules and instructions of administrators in mass housing areas and not allow chaos, gossip and disturbance.
  13. We should follow the rules of cleanliness for the health of the public, especially in the relocation areas, and warn those who do not comply.
  14. We should not ask for more help than we need, considering that others may also be in need. [2]

Measures Taken During Earthquake

        [1] https://dergi.totbid.org.tr/uploads/pdf_1147.pdf

        [2] https://dergipark.org.tr/en/download/article-file/179169

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This article was written by Sema Öztürk and published in Piyon Magazine Issue 03 in . You can continue reading the issue by scrolling down. You can read our other issues from the top menu, click here to return to the homepage, or fill out the form in the bottom section to subscribe to our magazine.


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