Great Washington ShakeOut happening Thursday

The Great Washington ShakeOut, an annual event promoting earthquake preparedness and safety, will be happening at 10:15 a.m. Thursday.

The program, which is typically has large participation by schools and colleges, provides procedures on what to do in the event of an earthquake as well as information on what to expect and how to prepare for earthquakes and tsunamis.

“One thing’s for sure: We all still need to practice drop, cover and hold on because an earthquake can strike without warning,” the Washington Military Department’s Steven Friederich said.

On the coast, tsunami sirens will also sound off at 10:15 a.m. on Thursday as part of the drill.

In some areas of the state, messages will be broadcast in Spanish and Russian as well as English.

Event organizers as residents to avoid calling 911 if they hear the sirens and/or warning messages as they are part of the ShakeOut event.

NOAA Weather Radios will also sound an alarm on Thursday as part of the drills.

Gov. Jay Inslee has issued a proclamation, encouraging participation in the event, which coincides with similar events taking place across the country and around the world.

Event organizers encourage people to use #ShakeOut on social media to share their experience practicing drop, cover and hold on.

“If there is ever a year to be prepared for a disaster, it’s 2020,” Inslee said on Twitter. “Join the Great Washington ShakeOut this Thursday. And make sure you and your family are ready for an earthquake.”

In September, a new Prepare in a Year guide was launched that instructs readers how to take one step a month for the next year to get prepared. The guide includes tips on helping to “re-prepare” to make sure readers are ready for any emergency.

Other resources offered are a videos on what to do in the event of an earthquake and tsunami simulation animation.

Registration is not required but it does help event planners keep a count on whom is participating. Interested parties can register at

For more information, visit