Emergency personnel are using the San Fernando Earthquake that jolted Santa Clarita Thursday to remind residents to be prepared for the “big one,” officials said.
Around 4:30 a.m. Thursday a 4.2 earthquake occurred, rattling the San Fernando and Santa Clarita Valleys, according to the United States Geological Survey (USGS).
“(Thursday’s) earthquake is a reminder that we live in earthquake country,” said Marilyn Jimenez, a spokesperson for the American Red Cross.
As a result of the earthquake, American Red Cross officials are encouraging Santa Clarita residents to make sure their emergency evacuation kits are ready to go and equipped with COVID-19 supplies.
“After a major disaster, families should be prepared with enough food, water and emergency supplies to last up to two weeks until help can arrive,” Jimenez said. “Build an easy-to-carry emergency preparedness kit that you can use at home or take with you if you must evacuate. Include items such as water, non-perishable food, a flashlight and extra batteries, a battery-powered radio, first aid kit and medications. Be sure to also include a cloth face covering for everyone in your household who can wear one safely.”
See Related: Magnitude 4.2 Earthquake Hits Near San Fernando
For when the “big one” does strike, residents are encouraged to drop and cover where it’s safe whether it may be under a table or desk, otherwise, drop wherever you are, according to officials.
“If you are in bed, stay there, curl up and hold on. Protect your head with a pillow,” Jimenez said.
Stay indoors until the shaking stops and you are sure it is safe to exit.
Due to social distancing measures in place due to the coronavirus Pandemic, the Red Cross has been actively working with schools and hotels as well as many other resources should a wildfire or earthquake necessitate a large emergency shelter.
In the event evacuation centers are needed, the Red Cross has plans to make the centers follow CDC guidelines, in order to keep the public safe from the virus, according to officials.
“We will be making sure people are wearing face masks and provide them if needed, and making sure cots are six feet apart,” Jimenez said.
The American Red Cross workers are also expected to have isolation areas if someone is showing symptoms so they are not with other individuals, according to officials.
“Ensuring people have a safe place to stay if they can’t return home after a disaster is a critical part of our mission,” Jimenez said.
The American Red Cross is asking the public to sign up for volunteers for if and when an earthquake or brush fire may prompt the need for an evacuation center.
“We need volunteers to help staff shelter reception, registration, meal distribution, sleeping arrangement, information collection and other vital tasks to help those we serve. We have both associate and supervisory level opportunities available,” Jimenez said.
The Red Cross is also in need of medical volunteers.
“If you are an RN, LPN, LVN, APRN, NP, EMT, paramedic, MD/DO or PA with an active, current and unencumbered license, the Red Cross needs your support. Volunteers are needed in shelters to help assess people’s health,” Jimenez added.
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