The Mississippi Emergency Management Agency is encouraging everyone in the state to take part in ‘The Great Central U.S. Shakeout’ exercise, Thursday morning, at 10:17.
During the self-led drill, participants practice how to “Drop, Cover, and Hold On”. The essential steps to take are to:
- DROP to the ground.
- Take COVER under a sturdy table or desk if possible, protecting your head and neck.
- HOLD ON until the shaking stops.
The ‘Shakeout’ drill is free and open to everyone, and participants usually include individuals, schools, businesses, local and state government agencies, and many other groups. To take part in ‘The Great Shakeout’, individuals and organizations are asked to register at www.shakeout.org/centralus.
Once registered, participants receive information on how to plan their drill so they may become better prepared for earthquakes. According to the ShakeOut website, over three million people have signed up in the United States, which includes over 341,000 in Mississippi. Meanwhile, over 65.6 million have signed up worldwide.
This exercise is especially important for Mississippians. The northwest portion of the state sits on the New Madrid Fault Zone, so knowing what to do during an earthquake is of great importance. This fault zone saw a series of major earthquakes in the early 1800s that caused catastrophic damage, and there are several fault lines that cross the state. This year, there have been two earthquakes in Mississippi, with the largest registering a 3.7 magnitude in Hollandale on January 8th.
The “Great Central U.S. ShakeOut” is being coordinated by local and state emergency management, as well as by the Central U.S. Earthquake Consortium through its Member and Associate States, the Federal Emergency Management Agency, the U.S. Geological Survey, and dozens of other partners.
For detailed preparedness information please visit MEMA’s website, www.msema.org, our social media platforms Facebook and Twitter, and the MEMA mobile app under Mississippi EMA.