For immediate release: Apr 19, 2011
Posted by: [DHS]
Contact: John Erickson or Emily Norcross
Phone: For Media Only: (317) 234-6713

FIRST STATEWIDE EARTHQUAKE DRILL ENGAGES 600,000 HOOSIERS

INDIANAPOLIS - More than 600,000 Hoosiers in schools, businesses and homes across the state participated in a statewide earthquake drill this morning. This Great ShakeOut intended to raise awareness about the threat of earthquakes in Indiana was the largest earthquake drill ever held in the state and part of the largest earthquake drill ever held in the Midwest.

Indiana Department of Homeland Security
"The Great ShakeOut in Indiana was tremendously successful," said IDHS Executive Director Joe Wainscott. "Our two objectives to raise awareness about the threat of earthquakes and promote preparedness were met as hundreds of thousands of students, businesses and families across the state practiced earthquake safety measures during the drill. I believe a substantially greater number of our citizens are now better prepared to respond appropriately in an earthquake."

Indiana Department of Education
"Educators, parents and community leaders must work together to ensure Indiana's schools maintain a safe environment for student learning. I commend the Indiana Department of Homeland Security and schools across the Hoosier state for working together to organize this important event on behalf of Indiana's students," said State Superintendent of Public Instruction Dr. Tony Bennett.

Indiana Geological Survey
"The Indiana Geological Survey is pleased that so many Hoosier residents took part in the Great Central US ShakeOut. Even if we don't experience a serious earthquake in the very near future, earthquake preparedness plans and supplies can protect citizens against other natural disasters such as floods and tornadoes," said Indiana Geological Survey Educational Outreach Coordinator Walter Gray.

Central US Earthquake Consortium
"Our first effort at holding a multi-state, public facing earthquake drill has been a huge success. This is in large part due to the importance that the Indiana Dept. of Homeland Security and Dept. of Education have placed on informing the public, and teaching them what to do before, during, and after an earthquake," said CUSEC Executive Director Jim Wilkinson. "With great partnerships like these, we have been able to reach a much larger audience to teach them about disaster preparedness and get them involved in becoming disaster resistant communities."

Federal Emergency Management Agency
"I want to commend the Indiana Department of Homeland Security for working together with the Central United States Earthquake Consortium to recruit more than half a million participants for this very important drill," said Andrew Velasquez III, Regional Administrator, FEMA Region V. "It is these types of preparedness initiatives that truly help us build a more resilient nation, and I applaud Indiana for including the whole community in this effort. Preparing schools, businesses, the faith-community and individuals on what to do before, during and after an earthquake can mean the difference between life and death."

While 10 other Central US Earthquake Consortium (CUSEC) member states will participate next week, Indiana "Shook Out" today to avoid conflicting with ISTEP testing in schools next week.

The Indiana Department of Homeland Security partnered with the Indiana Department of Education and Indiana Geological Survey to inform Hoosiers about the drill and encourage all Indiana residents, including schools, businesses and communities, to pledge their participation.
 
Across the state, many county emergency management agencies worked closely with local emergency responders and public safety officials to raise awareness about the ShakeOut and promote participation.
 
The Great Central U.S. ShakeOut is being coordinated by CUSEC and its member and associate states, the Federal Emergency Management Agency, the U.S. Geological Survey and dozens of other partners.
 
For more information about being prepared for earthquakes and other disasters, visit www.GetPrepared.in.gov.

Leadership for a Safe and Secure Indiana

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