Earthquake Preparedness is a Family Affair

This Little Girl Will Survive an Earthquake For SureFor families with children, earthquake preparedness is a project for the whole family.

Are you prepared for an earthquake? Do you think your family knows what it needs to do to survive one? Will your family be able to recover quickly after an earthquake? Any earthquake plan you make needs to include your children. Read on for some helpful ideas on preparing your children for the Big One.

Infants and Toddlers

  • For infants and toddlers, you really need to think in terms of making their environment as safe as possible.
  • Your baby’s crib should be placed well away from windows and tall furniture that could slide or topple on to them in their crib.
  • Any emergency kit you make for yourself needs to include at least a 72-hour supply of extra water, formula, bottles, food, juices, clothing, disposable diapers, baby wipes, a change of clothing and prescribed medications especially for your baby. You may not be a fan of disposable diapers, but post-earthquake is the ideal time to take advantage of their convenience. Keep another set of the same things in your car too.
  • Think about what you will need to be able to evacuate your baby. A stroller? A baby backpack? You may have to walk some distance so think in terms of what will be best for you to carry your emergency supplies and your baby.
  • Do you have bumper pads in your baby’s crib? They will cushion your baby during earthquake shaking.
  • Install kid-safe latches on all cupboards (not just those young children can reach) so no heavy or breakable shelf items come tumbling down on your baby during an earthquake.

Preschool & School-age Children

What Do You Put in Your Kid’s Earthquake Go-bag?
Why, as much as they can carry comfortably for their size, including their favorite small toys, games, and snacks. A child old enough to carry a backpack like this is old enough to shoulder their own little earthquake go-bag. Here are things to include:

  • A bag that your child can carry easily. Something big enough to hold everything, but small enough to slide under their bed. A child’s backpack would work well.
  • A bungee cord to attach it to the bed – you don’t want it bouncing away before you ever get to use it!
  • An easy-to-use, kid-friendly flashlight with batteries stored separately
  • Shoes
  • Socks
  • Bottled water
  • High calorie snack items that you know your child will eat.
  • Whistle
  • A change of clothes, like sweats.
  • A toy, small game or book
  • A copy of your family emergency wallet card
  • Important! A recent photo of you with your child. If you are separated, this could be the best means of being reunited.

Optional items for your kid’s earthquake go-bag:

  • Transistor radio, depending on the age of your child
  • Playing cards or other small games
  • Teddy Bear
  • Pen and paper
  • A favorite book
  • Dust mask/bandanna
  • Protective goggles
Posted in You Are More prepared Than You Think You Are
45 comments on “Earthquake Preparedness is a Family Affair
  1. Jeff Wise says:

    Great tips! I was always wondering at what age is appropriate to start talking to and preparing my kids. Not just for earthquake preparedness but for other natural disasters and events.

  2. Barbara says:

    I agree with Jeff–this website is a great resource! However, I can’t seem to find how to proceed with the “Drop, cover, and hold on” steps while holding an infant. Could you provide more details on how to hold a baby while following the procedure? Furthermore, what if the baby is in the crib and the shaking increases in intensity?

    Thank you ahead of time!
    – Bárbara

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  4. Sew baby says:

    Thanks for information. I think the most important is the photo and address note that children can keep it when we are separated.

  5. Lisa says:

    Thanks for the post. I have been meaning to put together a kit myself but keep putting it off. You have inspired me to get my kids involved make it a fun project.

  6. i think every school should give the student each a earthquake kit and train them on what to do during this situation. Great article

  7. When kids are old enough they should be taught how you can dial 911 and to know when it is appropriate to complete so

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    One thing I always do during the fall is disaster proof my home in case of an earthquake, flood or another type of natural disaster. I will remove all long limbs from overhanging trees. Pressure wash all the excess dirt from the side of the hill by my home and remove all glass from my garage.

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  1. […] to add coloring books or toys to help with long wait times; you can even encourage your kids to create their own mini emergency kits, just in […]

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