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‘World’s Largest Earthquake Drill’ scheduled for October 21

Information provided by the Illinois Emergency Management Agency

SPRINGFIELD, Ill. (October 14, 2021) – The world’s largest earthquake drill will take place at 10:21 a.m. on October 21, 2021, and the Illinois Emergency Management Agency is encouraging all families, schools, businesses, and other organizations to register to participate in this easy preparedness drill.

ShakeOut is an international event involving millions of participants from more than 40 states and territories and several countries. The goal of this “Drop, Cover and Hold On” drill is to improve preparedness and draw attention to the earthquake hazards that exist in Illinois, across the country, and around the world.

“Fire drills and tornado drills are common practices in schools and at businesses, but not everyone knows what they should do in the event of an earthquake,” said IEMA Director Alicia Tate-Nadeau. “We cannot predict when or where the next devastating earthquake will occur, but we can help people learn how to protect themselves and reduce damage to their homes.”

More than 17.5 million people around the world have already registered online. To date, more than 192,000 residents in Illinois have pledged to participate in this annual exercise. Local emergency managers throughout the state are hoping to increase that number as the day of the drill approaches.

IEMA encourages families to consider creating a Two Weeks Ready preparedness plan. Being Two Weeks Ready means having a plan and enough supplies for households to survive on their own for a full two weeks should a large disaster occur. IEMA has developed various toolkits to help families, communities, seniors and businesses adopt a Two Weeks Ready plan.

While often associated with the west coast, earthquakes can and do occur closer to Illinois, as our state is positioned between two active seismic zones, the New Madrid Seismic Zone and the Wabash Valley Seismic Zone. An earthquake in any of our neighboring states could be felt by residents in Illinois. ShakeOut provides the opportunity to practice what you would do in the event of an earthquake.

Three-step participation

  1. Register a home, school, business or organization on the ShakeOut website:  www.ShakeOut.org/centralus. Once registered, the provided point of contact will receive important information about earthquakes and preparedness.
  2. Make a plan — Families should build an emergency supply kit and talk about what should be done in the event of an earthquake. Secure heavy items like bookcases, refrigerators, televisions and objects that hang on the wall.
  3. Practice “DROP, COVER and HOLD ON” on October 21, 2021, at 10:21 am.
    1. Drop to the ground onto your hands and knees.
    2. Cover your head and neck with one arm to protect yourself from falling objects.
    3. Hold on to a sturdy table or desk until the shaking is done.

Additional earthquake preparedness and mitigation information is available on the following websites: http://www.ready.illinois.gov and http://www.cusec.org.

The Lansing Journal
The Lansing Journalhttps://thelansingjournal.com
The Lansing Journal publishes news releases from state, county, and local officials who provide information that impacts local community life. The particular contributor of each post is indicated in the byline.


  1. I am sure thee are people laughing at the story about “Earthquake drill.”
    I remember in the 1980’s feeling the sofa shaking, yelling at my kids to stop jumping. realized we were having an earthquake, went outside told my neighbor Mikes Fish and his wife Kathy and my family… they laughed at me. Ha Ha.. someone went inside came back out and said Dave’s right they say a 4.0 earthquake had happened! My wife called they felt the building shake in downtown Chicago.! have lived since then a 4.0 San Francisco. A 7.0 in San Diego that killed a few snakes in the desert and knock a few TVs off the stands at the Marine base east of town. and A 4.1 In Easton Maryland that put a crack in my garage floor and the driveway outside. So there is a fault line that runs from Missouri and into Illinois called the Sierra Madres fault line that did a lot of damage in the 1800’s. so be aware! It could be a very bad one day!

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