Mitigation Steps and Strategies for an Earthquake
Earthquakes are classified under the natural disasters. Proper mitigation strategies and steps should be put in place to have the possible risks under control.
The Mitigation strategies can be categorized into three; before the risk, during the incident, and after the risk. Before the risk, mitigation strategies include building strong constructions that are bolted to their foundations (Showalter, 2009). For this, professional masons are needed to ensure that the buildings that are constructed are strong enough to stand an earthquake. More to that, the buildings should be thoroughly checked for defects such as cracks and have them fixed by a professional.
Another mitigation step is to have everybody in the building and the whole area trained on what to do in the event that an earthquake occurs. Safe spots in and around the building should be identified and everybody made aware of them. Disaster supplies such as flood lights should be made available in the building, as well as an emergency line that anyone can access to seek for external help when the need arises. It is good advice for those in the building to have an emergency communication plan that would come in handy in the case of separation during the earthquake (Showalter, 2009).
During the disaster, one should take cover under a heavy piece of furniture, or against a wall and avoid moving outside. This is safe if the walls have been constructed following the specially set codes and standards (Showalter, 2009). If otherwise, seeking refuge in an open area would be a better option. It is also advisable to lie flat on the ground to avoid injury. If in a room, all heavy materials and things should be kept on the ground and one should stay away from glass materials.
After the disaster, quick efforts to rescue those trapped in wrecks should be made. The injured victims should be given medical attention as soon as possible and the authority should deny everybody access to the affected buildings, until they are declared safe. Everybody should also be on the alert and ready to receive any kind of news (Showalter, 2009).
Having the mitigation steps and strategies in place is important because it helps reduce the losses that would be incurred if nothing is done at all. For this reason, the authority should have policies that would enhance mitigation steps and strategies.
Mitigation Strategies for a Tsunami
A lot of losses were incurred in the Western coast of the United States of America when the Japen’ Tsunami hit the area. To prevent such losses in the event that another tsunami hits the area, Point Arena in particular, several mitigation risks and strategies can be exercised. The strategies can either be structural or non-structural.
The strategies that can be classified as structural strategies include constructing buildings that are at least 2-3 meters above the sea tide level (Stoltman, Lidstone, & DeChano, 2007). To make sure of this, skilled masons should be hired to make sure that the buildings meet the set codes. Other structures that can be constructed to reduce the effects of a possible tsunami are river gates, tsunami walls, and tsunami breakwaters (Stoltman, Lidstone, & DeChano, 2007). However, these structures are constructed depending on the geographic setting of an area. Essential facilities such as hospitals and school should be built at least 400m from the coastline.
Another mitigation step is to pay attention on what the forecasters predict; since they have the knowledge and technology that help them make predictions on when a tsunami is due. It is advisable to have disaster supplies such as torches available in all buildings and everybody should be trained on what to do in the chance that a tsunami occurs, or better still, when a warning is given (Stoltman, Lidstone, & DeChano, 2007). This includes having escape routes and means in mind. It is also wise if everybody knew of what signs to look out for, such as ground rumbling, and rise and fall of water levels.
After the disaster, those injured should be attended to as soon as possible. It is also recommended that the injured victims be moved as little as possible. The particular area should be avoided until proven safe by the authority. Using electronic appliances is one thing to avoid till all the electricity connections have been checked by an electrician.
Just like in all other disaster management strategies, mitigation steps are necessary to reduce the impacts suffered in such an incident. Again, a slight sign or warning of an impending tsunami should be taken seriously and necessary immediate action taken.
Showalter Pamela S. (2009). Geospatial Techniques in Urban Hazard and Disaster Analysis
(Geotechnologies and the Environment). Heidelberg: Springer publishers.
Stoltman Joseph P., Lidstone John, & DeChano Lisa M. (2007). International Perspectives on
Natural Disasters: Occurrence, Mitigation, and Consequences (Advances in Natural and
Technological Hazards Research). Heidelberg: Springer publishers.