Tampa, Fla. (August 25, 2011) - Earthquakes in Virginia and Colorado last week serve as reminders that earthquakes can strike anywhere in the U.S. without warning. Such events clearly demonstrate the importance of disaster preparation, according to the Insurance Institute for Business & Home Safety (IBHS).
A 5.9 magnitude earthquake struck just northwest of Richmond, Va., Tuesday 23rd August. Reports from various media outlets state the quake was felt as far north as Rhode Island and New York City, and as far south as Chapel Hill, N.C. The Virginia temblor came just hours after Colorado experienced a 5.3 magnitude earthquake, its largest since 1973.
"As so many people experienced first-hand this week, earthquakes can strike anywhere, at any time, and without warning," said Julie Rochman, president & CEO, IBHS. "Effective disaster safety measures can protect lives and property, but only if action is taken before, rather than after, a catastrophe like a major earthquake hits."
IBHS has a pair of free consumer guides available on its website, www.DisasterSafety.org, which provides information on how to effectively prepare their property for an earthquake.
"Earthquake Risks Around the U.S. - How to Protect Your Property" provides information to help residents and business owners better understand the areas of a home or business most vulnerable to earthquake damage and offers solutions to minimize the risk of property losses. The information and suggestions presented in this guide range from simple weekend tasks that require basic carpentry skills to more complex projects that may require professional assistance.
"Reduce Six Common Earthquake Risks for Under $70" identifies affordable ways to secure five items commonly found in homes. Most of these projects can be accomplished by residents or business owners themselves or with the help of someone who is handy with household tools.
"IBHS is pleased to offer these guides to consumers, along with other information about earthquake risk reduction," Rochman said. "We urge consumers to act on this information to help make their homes and businesses safer, stronger, and more resistant to earthquake damage."
IBHS is an independent, nonprofit, scientific and educational organization supported by the property insurance industry. The organization works to reduce the social and economic effects of natural disasters and other risks to residential and commercial property by conducting research and advocating improved construction, maintenance and preparation practices.