Check if Your Home is Earthquake Safe
Earthquakes are devastating structurally and mentally. If you live in a city where earthquakes occur, it's best to know if your home is earthquake safe. There are a few things you can do as a homeowner to protect your property.
Earthquake Safety Checklist
There are several things you'll want to know about the history of your house, so you'll know what areas to work on and what you're working with. Make sure to take photos of any areas of concern. The information will be useful if you need to hire a professional contractor for structural issues.
- Year home was built
- Shape of home
- Extensions or additions
- Depth of exterior walls
- Gable wall
- Steel bars in walls
- Material (wood, brick, concrete)
- Condition of home
- Type of foundation
- Type of soil
- Unsupported walls
- Previous earthquake damage
External Home Safety
Internal Home Safety
For homes using gas, install a shut-off mechanism to avoid a potentially dangerous situation during an earthquake.
Along with appliances, secure heavy pieces of furniture such as bookcases, China cabinets, filing cabinets, and armoires to the wall. For furniture and appliances such as desk chairs, sofas, and beds, engage the locking mechanism.
Install a layer of safety film on windows, sliding glass doors, and front and rear doors with decorative glass inserts to help prevent glass from becoming airborne and entering the home.
Secure drawers with latches to keep contents inside.
Take care of the things you can do, and call in the experts for things you can't do to protect your home from the shake, rattle, and roll of an earthquake.