Washington State is earthquake country. When the ground starts to shake, preparedness is key to our safety and survival.

Join us for #SMUShakeOUT

Get ready to shake out. October 18, 2018.

Participate in our campus-wide drill, and be a part of The Great Washington ShakeOut!

Oct. 18 at 10:18 a.m

Learn more about earthquake preparedness and how we should react when the ground starts shaking.

Visit ShakeOut.org »

How to participate

  • 2. Drop, cover and hold on.

    At 10:18 a.m., the emergency alert system will start the drill. Drop to the ground, take Cover under a table or desk, and Hold On to it as if a major earthquake were happening (stay down for at least 60 seconds). 

  • 3. Consider what would happen in a real-life scenario.

    Stay where you are, look around and imagine what would happen in a major earthquake.

    • What would fall on you or others?
    • What would be damaged?
    • What would life be like afterwards? 
    • What will you do before the actual earthquake happens to reduce losses and quickly recover? 
  • 4. Discuss what you learned.

    After the drill, discuss what you learned with your colleagues, and incorporate these lessons into your disaster plan.

Be prepared for an earthquake


    We encourage you to:

    • Take a look at your office, workspace or classroom.
    • Identify hazards (e.g., unsecure bookshelves, file cabinets, heavy items that should be anchored to the wall or floor). 
    • Know where to seek shelter from falling debris (e.g., getting under a sturdy desk or table).

    When the ground starts shaking you must fight the urge to run. You are at greater risk of being hit, or even buried, by flying debris if you go outside.

    When an earthquake starts, immediately:

    • DROP to the floor.
    • Take COVER under a sturdy desk or table.
    • HOLD ON to it until the shaking stops.

    Furniture shifts with the shaking, and holding on helps you move with it and maintain protective cover.


    Do not come out until the shaking stops. This can take a while, due to aftershocks and smaller ground tremors that follow the main earthquake.


    Once all shaking has stopped, immediately exit the building through the closest, safest exit, and make contact with others in the area to let them know you are okay.