Earthquake Preparedness For Illinois Residents

Some hazards such as thunderstorms, tornadoes and floods can be forecasted to provide advance notice to residents in an area of danger, other hazards such as earthquakes cannot be predicted.

Historically Illinois, and surrounding states, have experienced some of the largest earthquakes ever measured in North America.  We need to recognize the earthquake risk still posed by the New Madrid and Wabash Valley seismic zones and the affect significant earthquakes can have on the long term performance of our homes.

While scientists cannot predict when the next major earthquake will occur, people can learn how to protect themselves and reduce damage to their homes.

There are several steps you can take to help prevent injuries and property damage at home, including:

  • Inspecting your home’s foundation and anchoring systems annually
  • Strapping water heaters and large appliances to wall studs
  • Anchoring overhead light fixtures
  • Fastening shelves to wall studs and securing cabinet doors with latches
  • Strapping TVs, computers and other heavy equipment to prevent tipping
  • Learning how to shut off gas, water and electricity service to your home in case the lines are damaged

Learn more about how you can prepare your home and family for an earthquake at