Following information provides a summary of actual events and experiences. As GEA Team, we wish that this information, prepared by our team members through their experiences during the disasters they have participated in so far, where we provided search & rescue and humanitarian aid activities, will be a useful tool to ensure that you become prepared for earthquakes.
BE PREPARED, STAY SAFE.
GEA Search & Rescue Group
A. THINGS TO DO BEFORE THE EARTHQUAKE
• You will not have any time for thinking during an earthquake! Plan in advance! Drill in advance!
• Quit thinking as “It won’t happen to me”.
• Do not postpone your preparations.
• Apply necessary precautions for possible injuries during an earthquake. (e.g., film coating for breaking of windows, fixing or displacing furniture which may fall down, changing interior decoration, etc.)
• Keep a torch, shoes and water near your bed.
• Prepare a disaster bag to ease life after the earthquake.
• Make a communication plan to communicate and unite with people close to you through your relatives / friends in other cities.
• Keep torches, searchlights, fire extinguishers, first aid kits in appropriate places at home and at your office.
B. THINGS TO DO DURING AN EARTHQUAKE
• Stay calm
• Warn the people around you. (Try not to sound panicky)
• Do not change your location until tremor is over.
• Take fetal position
(FETAL POSITION: This is the position you should take to protect your head and inner organs and to monitor dangers which may come from above by laying down on your side with your limbs bent and drawn up to your torso.)
• Don’t panic. Don’t be paralyzed.
• Don’t jump out of windows.
• Don’t scream while you’re warning others. Don’t spread fear to others.
• Don’t run and try to escape outside.
• Don’t use the stairs.
• Don’t use the lifts.
• Don’t use electrical switches, lighters, candles, matches…
• Don’t get out on balconies.
If you are at places where groups of people exist, don’t fall into instinctive reactions and act in panic.
C. THINGS TO DO AFTER AN EARTHQUAKE
• Be calm – Do not panic. Do not put yourselves and your close ones in danger.
• Check your own condition. Check whether there are any injuries in your limbs and torso.
• Put on your shoes.
• Check your close ones’ condition. Do not move persons heavily injured.
• Leave the building Rapidly and be Careful about aftershocks.
D. THINGS TO DO UNDER DEBRIS
• Do not shout randomly. Dust, smoke and clinker block respiratory track when you shout randomly within collapsed buildings. Prolonged shouting causes energy and voice loss.
• Do not move randomly. Move if you see a safe exit and if you are not injured.
• If you cannot get out, stay where you are. Be calm and patient, do not panic. Switch to Active Resting and Active Sleeping mode.
• Check out for external voices. Try to listen and respond to the voices coming from outside.
• Stick to a rhythm while breathing.
• Give self-commands to yourself to control panic. Dream about things to sustain your hope for living. Do not create negative thoughts in your mind. Visualize the images/things you like.
• If there are also other people under debris, inspire and persuade them, too.
• Find a tool to transmit sound to outside by getting concrete blocks during following hours.