Utahns test earthquake preparedness with ‘Shakeout’ drill

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SALT LAKE CITY — An annual earthquake drill that tests Utah’s earthquake preparedness began Thursday.

Organizers for “The Great Utah Shakeout” asked participants to “drop, cover and hold” for a simulated earthquake beginning at 10:15 a.m.

“We know that Utah is due for a major devastating earthquake.  A 7.0 earthquake would disrupt our telecommunications, roads, bridges. All our utilities and our state needs to be as prepared as possible to respond to something like that,” said Utah Division of Emergency Management spokesman Joe Dougherty.

Medical responders, hospital workers, law enforcement agencies, students, military personnel and other volunteers reacted as they would in an actual earthquake emergency situation.

“There is nothing like the power of good habits,” said Kris Hamlet, director of the Division of Emergency Management, in a statement sent FOX 13. “When people practice responding well to earthquakes, they have a better chance of responding well when an earthquake strikes.”

Over 926,000 Utahns registered to participate in the event.

Click here for more details on the Great Utah Shakeout.

Many emergency preparedness tips and resources can be found at Be Ready Utah’s website, and experts also encourage people to download smart phone apps, suggesting the app from FEMA as well as several put out by the American Red Cross and one called FloodWatch.

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