What Should You Have In An Earthquake Kit?
An earthquake or also known as tremor or tremblor is the shaking of the surface of the earth that creates seismic waves. Seismic waves are the energy that travels through the earth’s layers that, aside from earthquakes, it also results in a volcanic eruption, magma movement, and landslides. The largest, main earthquake is called the mainshock- it always has aftershocks that follow.
An earthquake kit includes water, food, flashlight, first aid kit, dusk mask, search, and rescue kit, and a personal hygiene kit. A kit is necessary to make sure one’s safety and survival. If you think it lacks more, you can add some.
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Aside from the things you should include in an earthquake kit, you may also learn about what causes an earthquake and how it is recorded. In the latter part of this short read, I will also discuss some of the types of earthquakes. Let’s get into it.
Earthquake Kit Necessity
Every person should have their own earthquake kit ready in case of emergencies. If you want to have yours, acquire a durable container where you can store the earthquake essentials for your kit and put it in a place where you and your family can easily access when an earthquake occurs.
Here are some of the basic things you should include in your earthquake kit:
We all know that water is one main necessity that a person can have, aside from the fact that it’s easy to prepare. In an earthquake kit, prepare water, usually one gallon of water per person per day at least for three days. It will help you for drinking and sanitation. It is said that the cheapest way to store sufficient water is to purchase one water storage that you can buy online.
When an earthquake occurs, it is unsafe for you to drive on roads, the worst is that stores may be closed for several weeks. That’s why when preparing for a kit, you should always consider having a three-day supply per person for at least a week. Canned foods are not recommended as their life span will only last for six months. Try to include ER bars that are said to last up to 5 years and is sure, safe.
This specific bar is said to be approved for the testing and quality procedures of the U.S Coast Guard Shelf-Life Emergency Food Ration. You can look up to it online or in physical stores near you.
Do not forget that you should include a flashlight in your earthquake kit or any emergency lights like headlamps and extra batteries. It will help you navigate through dark roads and will help get out of your home whenever there’s a need to travel to a safe location. There is a flashlight that you can buy separately and batteries, but battery life only lasts for six months. Try to consider a hand-crank radio with lantern lights that don’t need batteries and have emergency light-sticks that lasts up to 5 years.
First Aid Kit
This kit is not only needed when there’s an earthquake, but it is also crucial for everyday accidents. It contains several compresses, antiseptics, bandages, gauze pads, medicines, whistles, and rolls.
Masks are essential in a kit because it prevents the inhalation of airborne particles such as fire, dust storm, and a volcanic eruption. If there is an earthquake, a mask will help filter the particles that you may inhale, which causes a lung problem eventually—wondering what mask to buy and include in your kit, better to have an N-95 mask that has an air filter. You can buy a mask online wherein in 1 box. There are ten pieces of it, perfect for every family member.
Search And Rescue Kit
When an earthquake occurs, you will have to deal with evacuating your home and help others evacuate too. A collapsed structure may hinder you from leaving. That’s why it is advisable to have a search and rescue kit. In this kit, it includes; wrenches, can opener, screwdriver, knife edges, saw blade, ruler, butterfly wrench, and a keyring holder. In this kit, you can also add gloves to protect you from harmful debris.
Personal Hygiene Kit
A personal hygiene kit not only applies when an emergency occurs but whenever you are on a long road trip. So, when you decide to have an earthquake kit, it’s not hard anymore. In this kit, it includes; a toothpaste, toothbrush, shaver, a shampoo, conditioner, soap, towelettes, and a handy tissue. In times like an earthquake, there is a possibility that you will be evacuated, and when evacuated, it’s hard not to clean your body.
Remember that your personal hygiene will benefit your health and will have an impact too to those around you in a temporary shelter.
Kit Storage Location
When you can distinguish what’s inside your earthquake kit, make sure where you will bring it out. We don’t if when will an earthquake occurs, better be sure to have it in-store in various locations.
- Home – It is understood that when an earthquake occurs, you’re not in the house, better to leave it where your family can easily see it.
- Work – When you are keeping a kit at work, do not include food, water, medicines, as well as comfortable walking shoes that are stored in a case.
- Vehicle – in case you’re out and driving, and an earthquake occurs, worry-not because you have kept a kit inside your car.
What Cause An Earthquake
Earthquakes usually occur when the rocks underground break along with a fault. When two blocks are being rubbed against each other, that’s when the time that they stick a bit. The rocks don’t just move smoothly. They catch on each other, still pushing but are not moving. The stones will break because of the pressure that’s building up, and when it breaks, the earthquake occurs.
During the earthquake and afterward, the plates of the rocks will start moving, and they will continue to move until they are stuck again—the spot underground where the rock break is called the focus of the earthquake. And right above the focus is called the epicenter of the earthquake.
How Is Earthquake Recorded?
An earthquake is recorded by an instrument that is called seismographs. This device can be set firmly in the ground and has a free-hanging heavyweight. When there’s an earthquake, it causes the ground and the seismograph to shake, but not with the hanging weight. The position difference between the shaking part of the seismograph and the motionless part is what the record contains.
How It Is Being Measured
Scientists who study the movement of an earthquake use seismogram recordings from seismographs to determine how large the earthquake was. A short wiggly line means a small earthquake, while the long wiggly line means a large earthquake. Meaning the size of the fault will always depend on the wiggle’s length. Meanwhile, the size of the wiggle depends on the amount of the slip.
The magnitude is used to measure an earthquake, and there’s one magnitude for each earthquake. Scientists can only tell what the earthquake shaking intensity is, but that depends on where you are when it occurs.
Scientists Can’t Predict An Earthquake
Some are asking if scientists can predict an earthquake, but they can’t predict it. No one can really predict the time of earthquake’s occurrence. They said that scientists tried many different ways to predict an earthquake, but they did not succeed. Yes, they know, in particular, a fault that there will be another earthquake in the future, but they cannot say when it will exactly happen.
Most earthquake clusters consist of small tremors, meaning they may not cause you severe damage.
It is an earthquake that occurs after a significant earthquake occurs, the mainshock. It is in the same region as the mainshock, but it has a smaller magnitude than the mainshock. If the aftershock is larger than the mainshock, the aftershock is re-designated as the mainshock. The initial shock, however, is re-designated as a for. When there’s an effect of the mainshocks that surrounds the fault line, aftershocks are formed.
It is the sequence of earthquakes striking in a specific area within a short period. It is different from earthquakes followed by a series of aftershocks. Its length of time varies, sometimes it may be of the order of days, months, or even years.
As a conclusion, no one can expect if when an earthquake will occur. In fact, even scientists are not capable of telling the accurate time or date if when will this kind of natural disaster can happen. For this reason, it is important to having an earthquake kit to help not just you, but your family and others during such situations. An earthquake kit will help you to prevent injuring seriously and it will also help you to survive whenever help is long to arrive.
Always remember that having an emergency kit can save lives. It is especially if you keep you and your family safe during an unexpected event such as an earthquake.