Earthquakes happen around the world with varying levels of intensity. Here in the Bay Area we have several each day, but few of them are strong enough to cause damage. If you’ve been putting it off, today is the day to earthquake-proof your home with potential earthquakes in mind. Having lived here during the 1989 Loma Prieta earthquake, which registered 6.9 on the Richter scale, I remember what a temblor can do to your kitchen, among other things. It’s important to prepare in advance for what many think is inevitable.
These are a few organizing tips I’ve come up with over the years to keep our kitchen as safe as possible during a temblor.
Earthquake-proof Stemware Racks
Additional Earthquake-proof Ideas
Strap tall bookcases, entertainment centers and other top-heavy furniture to the wall using strapping kits, available at most hardware stores. Consider strapping heavy but movable appliances or large TV screens as well.
Prepare an emergency earthquake kit and if possible, store it away from the house. I’ve seen one version using a tall, outdoor trash can with a snap on lid. I created our own with a couple of Rubbermaid bins. I store them in our back yard inside a garden bench. We use the top of the bench as a side board when we eat or entertain outdoors.
The American Red Cross provides guidelines for preparing a kit of your own.
Arrange beds away from windows whenever possible. A flashlight and a pair of sturdy slippers next to each bed will help you get out to safety *after* the shaking stops and when it is safe to do so. We have only one useable wall for our bed in the master bedroom, so when the time came to replace the 40-year-old windows, we replaced that one with tempered glass. It was more expensive, but worth the piece of mind.
Please share your own organizing safety tips in the comments section below.