Alaska’s and Utah’s Earthquake Procedures


Preston Tischner, Junior page editor

Kearns-There was a magnitude 4.8 earthquake that happened in Alaska and it combined onto the 7.0 magnitude earthquake that happened in Anchorage, Alaska. Which broke most of the roads there. Alaska did get the roads fixed in about 4 days, because they don’t have a ton of road there.

The Cougar Claw, got a chance to talk to Ashley Lally, the Director of the Security and Emergency Preparedness in Anchorage Alaska. Ashley was asked, what are the schools’ procedures for an earthquake there in Alaska?

She told the Cougar Claw the guidelines that they use. The earthquake procedure Alaska follows, is from the Red Cross and FEMA guidelines which is, “Drop, Cover and Hold on”. If they are in a classroom they immediately go under their desks and will cover their heads. The students hold onto one of the desk legs with one hand, then use the other hand to cover their head for more protection.

If anyone is in a hallway, they will drop to the ground and hold on to their head and neck. If they can, anyone who is in the hallway should try and hold onto an interior wall, never an exterior wall. Stay out in the open away from anything dangerous, if that is your only choice to you have to be safe.

If anyone is outside of the building, they need to make sure they are in an open area away from trees, building walls, tall light posts and anything else that could potentially harm you. The Anchorage District does an earthquake drill twice a year, they also participated in the 2018 Great Shakeout.

Ashley was then asked one last question, should teachers give a lesson on what to do during an earthquake, and have the students teach their parents about it? She responded with, “It’s definitely important for teachers to talk to their students about earthquakes, but also all of the drills that we conduct. We conduct this drill twice per year and had just conducted one in October; I think this helped our students and staff to feel ready and stay calm when it hit. We encourage students to take this knowledge back home and share it with their families.”

The earthquake procedure here in Utah, is the same as in Alaska. Utahns do have to be prepared like Alaska, with food supply, shelter and just prepare safety at home and at school. Utah does have earthquake drills, they have them twice a school year to be prepared for everyone.

So, the procedures Utah has, are pretty much identical, Utah may do things a tad different. That is totally fine if it is safe and will keep everyone safe in a disaster such as this.