Earthquake and its measures! Depreme

Hi all,

I am Mrs. Kanchan Vikram – Zemse. I am a Geologist. I would like to tell you some facts of Earthquake.

I have picked stuff from internet to make you understand (layman language) how does it occurs and most importantly how to be safe. This presentation is just for education and understanding purpose.

Make sure that your kids also read it.

I have tried to prepare this presentation in most simplified ways and with images. which will help you to understand certain facts.

No matter whatever preparations we do, it is really difficult, if we all are in different places during the disaster. First thing we lose is connectivity.

How do we connect when there is no mobile/cell phones, no internet, children are away someone is travelling and we don’t get anything to respond?

Even to tell I am safe!

This actually creates a panic situation.

Its better that everyone knows some measures to rescue yourself in safer place till situation becomes normal.

What is Earthquake?

A sudden violent shaking of the ground, typically causing great destruction, as a result of movements within the earth’s crust or volcanic action

How does earthquake occur?

Earthquakes are usually caused when rock underground suddenly breaks along a fault. This sudden release of energy causes the seismic waves that make the ground shake. When two blocks of rock or two plates are rubbing against each other, they stick a little. They don’t just slide smoothly; the rocks catch create friction between their movements.

  • This includes explanations to be prepared for extreme situations.
  • Unlike other natural hazards, earthquake can be predicted with respect to monitoring seismic activities but it cannot give the exact location and extent of losses that can occur.
  • Some information may appear more, but it is all linked.
  • Here, I am producing some general information which you can always keep into mind.
  • Hope this information will be useful for you!

What is Earthquake?
A sudden violent shaking of the ground, typically causing great destruction, as a result of movements within the earth’s crust or volcanic action
How does earthquake occur?
Earthquakes are usually caused when rock underground suddenly breaks along a fault. This sudden release of energy causes the seismic waves that make the ground shake. When two blocks of rock or two plates are rubbing against each other, they stick a little. They don’t just slide smoothly; the rocks catch create friction between their movements.

What is fault? Fault is a weak plane along which either sides of the plane move in different directions


Fault can vary in size

Can Earthquakes be predicted?

Earthquake prone zones can be demarcated. Magnitude, extent of losses or destruction, date and time will not be predicted exactly.

Plates word referred to is for Tectonic plate.

In lay man language, Earth surface is continuously moving. These movements are occurring since millions of year since the formation of earth. Different location experience different movements with respect to speed, direction and density.

Some example videos. Simple explanation of plate tectonics

Plates movements through millions of years.

Future movements of plate

Tectonic setup and movement map of Turkey found on internet.



Seismic activity prone area map found on internet.


Based on the several studies on plate tectonics, hazard zoning map is created.

So by now you must have understood what is earthquake and what are the areas which it can show major impacts.

Predicting and preparing for earthquakes

Earthquakes are not as easy to predict as volcanic eruptions. However, there are still some ways of monitoring the chances of an earthquake:

Laser beams can be used to detect plate movement.

A seismometer is used to pick up the vibrations in the Earth’s crust. An increase in vibrations may indicate a possible earthquake.

Radon gas escapes from cracks in the Earth’s crust. Levels of radon gas can be monitored – a sudden increase may suggest an earthquake.

Many of the prediction techniques used to monitor earthquakes are not 100 per cent reliable. Planning and preparing for an earthquake is therefore very important.

People living in earthquake zones need to know what they should do in the event of a quake. Training people may involve holding earthquake drills and educating people via TV or radio.

Above mentioned are some technical aspects.

First aid kit and emergency materials

People may put together emergency kits and store them in their homes. An emergency kit may include first-aid items, blankets and tinned food, wooden staffs.

Other items in bag with torch, backup money as you are not going to get ATM machines working, socks, gloves, whistle, tissue paper roll, basic baby necessities, sanitary napkins and emergency medicines.

What all should first aid kit consist of?

Material, minimum for 5-10 members with red cross mark on it,

Pocket mask,


Cotton bundle,

Plastic tweezers,

Disposable gloves,

Pair of scissors,

Anti-septic cream (like soframycin),

Anti -septic liquid (like Dettol),

Tablets for fever, cold and pain killer,


Earthquakes are caused by the release of built-up pressure inside the Earth’s crust. An earthquake’s power is measured on the Richter scale using an instrument called a ‘seismometer’.

The effects of an earthquake can be devastating – they can destroy settlements, change landscapes, and cause many deaths.


An earthquake is the shaking and vibration of the Earth’s crust due to movement of the Earth’s plates (plate tectonics). Earthquakes can happen along any type of plate boundary.

Earthquakes occur when tension is released from inside the crust. Plates do not always move smoothly alongside each other and sometimes get stuck. When this happens pressure builds up. When this pressure is eventually released, an earthquake tends to occur.

The point inside the crust where the pressure is released is called the focus. The point on the Earth’s surface above the focus is called the epicentre.

Earthquake energy is released in seismic waves. These waves spread out from the focus. The waves are felt most strongly at the epicentre, becoming less strong as they travel further away. The most severe damage caused by an earthquake will happen close to the epicentre.

Measurement of Earthquake

The power of an earthquake is measured using a seismometer. A seismometer detects the vibrations caused by an earthquake. It plots these vibrations on a seismograph.

The strength, or magnitude, of an earthquake is measured using the Richter scale. The Richter scale is numbered 0-10.


Earthquakes can destroy settlements and kill many people. Aftershocks can cause even more damage to an area. It is possible to classify the impacts of an earthquake, by taking the following factors into account:

short-term (immediate) impacts

long-term impacts

social impacts (the impact on people)

economic impacts (the impact on the wealth of an area)

environmental impacts (the impact on the landscape)

Factors affecting the impact of an earthquake

Effects are often classified as primary and secondary impacts. Primary effects occur as a direct result of the ground shaking, eg buildings collapsing. Secondary effects occur as a result of the primary effects, eg tsunamis or fires due to ruptured gas mains.

Distance from the epicentre – the effects of an earthquake are more severe at its centre.

The higher on the Richter scale, the more severe the earthquake is.

Population density (rural or urban area). The more densely populated an area, the more likely there are to be deaths and casualties.

Communication – accessibility for rescue teams.

Time of day influences whether people are in their homes, at work or travelling. A severe earthquake at rush hour in a densely populated urban area could have devastating effects.

The time of year and climate will influence survival rates and the rate at which disease can spread.

Communication systems may be underdeveloped, so the population may not be well educated about what to do in the event of an earthquake.

Homes and other buildings may suffer serious damage when a disaster occurs.

Buildings collapsing can cause high death tolls.

Evacuation and other emergency plans can be difficult to put into action due to limited funds and resources.

Clearing up can be difficult. There may not be enough money to rebuild homes quickly and safely. Many people could be forced to live in emergency housing or refugee camps.

You need to register your information at refugee camps, as you will not be able to visit your residence.

Best stuff to read on

Even after several studies and information we need to be prepared for natural hazards in order to overcome losses. All losses can be recovered, but life cannot be brought back.

How to prepare yourself for such instances?

What Should I Do Before, During, And After An Earthquake?

What to Do Before an Earthquake?

Make sure you have a fire extinguisher, first aid kit, a battery-powered radio, a flashlight, and extra batteries at home.

Learn first aid.

Learn how to turn off the gas, water, and electricity.

Make up a plan of where to meet your family after an earthquake.

Don’t leave heavy objects on shelves (they’ll fall during a quake).

Anchor heavy furniture, cupboards, and appliances to the walls or floor.

Learn the earthquake plan at your school or workplace.

What to Do During an Earthquake?

Stay calm! If you’re indoors, stay inside. If you’re outside, stay outside.

If you’re indoors, stand against a wall near the centre of the building, stand in a doorway, or crawl under heavy furniture (a desk or table). Stay away from windows and outside doors.

If you’re outdoors, stay in the open away from power lines or anything that might fall. Stay away from buildings (stuff might fall off the building or the building could fall on you).

Don’t use matches, candles, or any flame. Broken gas lines and fire don’t mix.

If you’re in a car, stop the car and stay inside the car until the earthquake stops.

Don’t use elevators (they’ll probably get stuck anyway).

What to Do After an Earthquake?

Check yourself and others for injuries. Provide first aid for anyone who needs it.

Check water, gas, and electric lines for damage. If any are damaged, shut off the valves. Check for the smell of gas. If you smell it, open all the windows and doors, leave immediately, and report it to the authorities (use someone else’s phone).

Turn on the radio. Don’t use the phone unless it’s an emergency.

Stay out of damaged buildings.

Be careful around broken glass and debris. Wear boots or sturdy shoes to keep from cutting your feet.

Be careful of chimneys (they may fall on you).

Stay away from beaches. Tsunamis and seiches sometimes hit after the ground has stopped shaking.

Stay away from damaged areas.

If you’re at school or work, follow the emergency plan or the instructions of the person in charge.

Expect aftershocks.

Similar more information.

Personal observation and opinion:

Refer to a map of hazard prone area on internet.

Now a day’s every country hazard zoning map is available on internet, which a lay man can refer and understand.

Find out, if the place you are located comes under red zone?

If you area falls under such an area, you need to be prepared and well equipped.

Family should have an action plan along with other families.

Keep a track of whereabouts of all the family members.

Keep some signalling method in case if the mobile and internet facility is not available.

Prepare a bag pack with all the items which comes immediately into your mind.

Try to contact common place and keep a written message.

As the tremors are felt, we cannot guess the strength of earthquake immediately.

Sometimes there may be minor shocks first followed by major shocks or vice a versa.

Stay away from tall buildings and objects.

Stay away from electrical lights cables as they may swing anywhere once broken.

Stay away as far as away from sea side

If the epicentre or fault movement is inside sea, there is displacement of huge water column above it.

It appears an unusual low tide…. where before Tsunami…huge volume of water is displaced. This gives some time for people to run towards hilly area where the amount of water which has retreated is going to come back with a huge wave.

A water retreat back than usual low tide level and comes with a wave with more crest height.

It’s like; if you have to take a long leap you go back few steps and try to run fast and propel yourself.

Series of some videos for Tsunami….though topic is on earthquake….things are connected…..

Sometimes animal show unusual behavioural pattern.

Dogs keep howling, nocturnal animals living in burrows are seen coming out of burrows in day time. I have seen cats behaving unusual. I have friends who feel uneasy throughout phase.

In one of the video links, a man who has gone for scuba diving mentions that (also we can see in a video) that there are absolutely no fishes.

This is probably some animals can detect seismic activities/seismic waves.

Even we feel some uneasiness

If you are living in a hilly area, it is quite probable for a landslide to occur. You need to evacuate the place before even warnings come to you.

This is because slight movement underground may cause slopes unstable, they may lose existing centre of gravity. This also cannot be predicted.

Back to earthquake…

Keep some symbol/sign ready for rescue camp, which says to your family that you are alive.

Make sure that before running in panic….it’s just matter of few seconds to close gas sources and electricity supply which will help rescue team to reach you or others who are trapped in.

On small tremors felt…communicate with your all the people…not for panicking but to know what’s going on?

Refer for radio transmission and television for warning messages.

Earthquake will happen for just few seconds or a minute max. You will get less time to feel, understand think and act.

Don’t imagine that you can leave the place and fly immediately to safe place; you will not get that much time.

In this situation just relax your mind and try to link and think.

Prioritise your movements.

First thing is to move to a safer place with kids, old people, pets and disabled.

Rescue all the members to safe place. If all the family members are in different places keep some assembly area or a common meeting point, which according to you will be safe considering the situation.

Practically you will not have time to run to school or office place to rescue your family members, But you can have a escape point for.

Injured persons needs to get first aid

What comes next is mitigation process.

Once the earthquake phases have passed away it’s the scene of loot. Even if you are prepared with your bag packs you will have danger from other survivors hunting for money, food and medicine.

After all its survival of the fittest/smartest!!!

You are still not safe. That’s the reason you should have a group of people and not only your family.

If all this while you are in good condition try to look around and evaluate damage. Very few minds are active in this state. Rest all go to panic mode seeing damage and losses. Rescue team may take time to reach every individual.

Do not enter partially damaged structures to rescue immediately, chances of loose material to collapse.

If there is lots of dust in air, it is important to tie a wet kerchief around your nose.

There is possibility of spreading epidemic if the dead bodies are lying around the scene. It takes long time effort to clear and reach to every member trapped under debris.

Dealing with panic attacks. It is the toughest part which takes long time to heal.

Capable persons can make team and plan to put some efforts together at war level.

Rescue operation takes time due to loss in connectivity; you must prepare yourself at least for 4-5 days for immediate help till you are rescued.

This is all possible when it occurs during day time. If it occurs while we all are sleeping, it will be more difficult as we get very less time to understand something is happening around us and we need to act on it, immediately.

We cannot predict what is going to happen in next moment.

Nothing is in our control.

We can just try to be prepared for what’s coming next.

Awareness to an individual can’t help. Each and every person should be aware about the same.

Natural hazard will not see religion, race, cast, gender, age or status. Nor it’s going to give time to think. It will sweep everything in seconds.

  • Not panicking and acting wisely can help us and others.
  • Thanks for reading.

If you’ve some valuable information please post it in comments so it might help others to learn from your experience.

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