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The recent earthquakes in Japan and Ecuador have been devastating reminders
of how better prepared we can all be. Each year, it is why we join together
in ShakeOut – to get ready for the earthquakes in our future.
On 10/20 at 10:20 a.m., join your community again and focus
on improving your level of preparedness. We are all in this together!

Japan, Ecuador – What We Can Learn

When you look around outside, it is easy to observe how Earth’s movements
have shaped the landscape, from the mountains to the sea. We are all sitting
on top of moving parts called tectonic plates that piece together like a cracked, stressed jigsaw puzzle. With so much push and pull, it is evident that large
(and small!) earthquakes will continue to be a fact of life.

The people of southwest Japan were rocked by these forces recently.
In the urban area of Kumamoto, residents were awakened by strong shaking
from one large earthquake and then even stronger shaking a day later
from a larger earthquake, which turned out to be the main shock.
Remember: after any earthquake, stay vigilant and improve safety –
you never know if aftershocks are coming,
or if what you just felt is the foreshock to a much larger shock.

After the Japan sequence, a very large earthquake occurred in Ecuador,
on the northwest coastline. This earthquake was roughly 16 times more powerful than the main shock in Japan. Though it occurred in a sparsely, populated
rural area, the building codes in Ecuador are not as developed as in Japan,
and the death toll has quickly climbed past 600.

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