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Standing in a doorway during a quake? That’s so yesterday.
Telling people to stand in a doorway during an earthquake is outdated advice. It’s one of several earthquake myths you should know about in the lead-up to the Great California ShakeOut at 10:16 a.m. on October 16, 2014.
In past earthquakes, in unreinforced masonry structures and adobe homes, the door frame may have been the only thing left standing in the aftermath of an earthquake. So people thought safety could be found by standing in doorways.
In modern homes, doorways are no stronger than any other parts of the house and usually have doors that can swing and injure you.
You are safer practicing the “DROP, COVER, AND HOLD” maneuver under a sturdy piece of furniture like a strong desk or table. If indoors, stay there. Drop to the floor, make yourself small and get under a desk or table or stand in a corner. If outdoors, get into an open area away from trees, buildings, walls and power lines. If in a high-rise building, stay away from windows and outside walls, stay out of elevators, and get under a table. If driving, pull over to the side of the road and stop. Avoid overpasses and power lines. Stay inside your car until the shaking is over. If in a crowded public place, do not rush for the doors. Crouch and cover your head and neck with your hands and arms.
For more information about earthquake safety or to particpate in the ShakeOut, go to www.shakeout.org/california.