Curren D. Price, Jr., currently the California Assembly Member for the 51st District, and Democrat Candidate for California's 26th Senate District, the vacancy created by the election of 2nd District Los Angeles County Supervisor, Mark Ridley-Thomas, recently convened an earthquake preparedness Town Hall Meeting at the Veteran's memorial Auditorium in Culver City, entitled, "Finding Out What's Next."
Price, who serves as Chair of the Assembly Governmental Organization Committee, overseeing a broad range of categories from horse racing and the Lottery to card clubs and Emergency preparedness, believes that it is important to help local residents become 'quake-ready.'
"Informed neighbors are prepared neighbors." Price said. "When a major quake strikes, it may be a couple of days before help arrives. It pays to know what to do to save your life and the lives of others."
The meeting, conducted in partnership with the California Emergency Management Agency, and hosted by the City of El Segundo, featured a re-cap of the "Great Southern California Shakeout," that was presented by Mark Bassett, Administrator of the Southern Region, California Emergency Management Agency, Volunteer Representatives, and Team SAFE-T representatives.
It also provided local outreach and education on the subject of earthquake preparedness with presentations from Los Angeles County Sheriff, Lee Baca, D. Scott Malsin, Mayor of the City of Culver City, and Emergency Network Los Angeles Representatives.
Perry Waldon, Culver City Emergency Response Team member, made it clear, with a reference to the conditions that were observed in the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina in New Orleans, that personal responsibility is the key element in protecting oneself during and after an earthquake.
"It is important that families take some time to educate their family members on what steps should be taken in advance of an earthquake, which is inevitable." Waldon said. "They should also know what to do when the earthquake is in motion."
"When you feel an earthquake, everyone should duck, take cover, and hold your position." He continued. "The safest place to be is under a table to protect from items falling from above and shattering glass, which, during the Northridge Earthquake, accounted for more than 70% of all of the earthquake-related injuries."
It was also pointed out that another contributing factor to earthquake-related injuries is panic. "If you are indoors, do not rush out and do not use the elevator. If you are outdoors, it is safest to stay outside moving away from buildings and electrical wires.
"The unfortunate reality is that seismologists indicate that California is likely to experience another earthquake in the future, and more than likely, the initial quake will last longer than the devastating Northridge Quake." Price said. "It is very important that Californians understand what steps they should take to prepare themselves for that inevitable occurrence and familiarize themselves with what they should do during the quake and immediately after, in order to protect themselves and their families."
"There is a lot of information available from a variety of sources on the subject of earthquake preparedness and other disaster preparation." Price concluded. "If individuals do not know where to go or how to get specific information about advance-disaster preparation, they are welcome to contact my Field Office in Inglewood. The telephone number is 310/412-6400.