Are You Ready to ShakeOut On April 28, 2011?

April 01, 2011
The Great Central U.S. ShakeOut |

Are You Ready to ShakeOut On April 28, 2011?

With more than 40 million people living and working in the central United States, a major earthquake could cause unprecedented disruption and devastation.

FACT: The central United States is vulnerable to earthquakes. The New Madrid Seismic zone lies within the central Mississippi Valley, extending from northeast Arkansas, through southeast Missouri, western Tennessee, western Kentucky to southern Illinois.

FACT: The New Madrid Seismic zone produced four of the largest earthquakes in North American history, with moment magnitudes estimated to be as large as 8.0, all occurring within a three-month period between December 1811 and February 1812.  These earthquakes changed the course of the Mississippi River, formed new lakes and damaged structures as far away as Cincinnati. Their shock waves covered more than a million square miles, from Mississippi to Michigan, from Pennsylvania to Nebraska.

FACT: A recent study by the University of Illinois found that a replay of the New Madrid earthquakes of the 1800s would have a devastating impact in the Midwest. The report suggests that if the region were hit with earthquakes of a 7.7 magnitude along the New Madrid fault, the earthquake would render 7 million people homeless, would damage 715,000 buildings and would have a $300 billion economic impact. 

FACT: Because St. Louis and Memphis are in such close proximity to the New Madrid fault, those important cities would suffer the most damage. But, the impact would be felt throughout at least eight Midwest states including Alabama, Mississippi, Arkansas, Missouri, Illinois, Indiana, Kentucky and Tennessee.

Are You Prepared?

What we do now, before a big earthquake, will determine what our lives will be like afterwards. With earthquakes an inevitable part of our future, we must act quickly to ensure that disasters do not become catastrophes.

What is the ShakeOut?

The Great Central U.S. ShakeOut will be the largest earthquake preparedness event in central U.S. history.  More than one million participants in multiple states will simultaneously practice proptecting themselves and those around them from the dangers of  a major quake.

When Is The ShakeOut?

- April 28, 2011 @ 10:15AM CDT (April 19, 2011 in Indiana)

How Should I Protect Myself During An Earthquake?

- DROP to the ground,

- Take COVER by getting under a sturdy desk or table, and

- HOLD ON to it until the shaking stops

Why Is The ShakeOut Important?

Scientists estimate that there is a 25‐40% probability of a damaging earthquake occurring in the central U.S. within the next 50 years. The ShakeOut is designed to help individuals and communities in the region get ready for damaging earthquakes, practice how to protect themselves (Drop, Cover, and Hold On), and to prevent disasters from becoming catastrophes.

How Do I Get Involved?

To participate, go to and pledge your family, school, business, or organization’s participation in the drill. Registered participants will receive information on how to plan their drill and how to create a dialogue with others about earthquake preparedness.

All organizers ask is that participants register (so they can be counted and receive communications), and at the minimum practice Drop, Cover, and Hold On at the specified time.

It is a two minute commitment for something that can save your life. It all begins with registering, which is free and open to everyone.

More Information:

On Facebook:

On Twitter: @CentUS_ShakeOut

Information on this page courtesy of The Great Central U.S. Shake-Out and the Federal Emergency Management Agency.

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