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As events in Japan this past March showed us, Big Ones really do happen. Richter 9 is about as large as they come, an event so enormous it takes away the breath of even a geologist like myself.
It’s no comfort to think that quakes of that same general size are likely along the western boundaries of the Lower 48 and also in the region where Missouri, Kentucky and Tennessee come together. In short, major quakes here in the U.S. simply must be expected.
And there are other “big ones,” too. As we’ve seen this spring, tornadoes and flooding are most unfortunately a natural part of our world. And electrical outages sometimes shape the man-made landscape in which we live.
Partly because I’m a geologist and know a bit about seismic Big Ones, I’ve done some work to get my household ready for emergencies. But recently I put myself to the test by comparing my paltry efforts with those of some of my Mormon neighbors. A local Latter-day Saints congregation was kind enough to educate me at an emergency preparedness fair they held for the public.
While I won’t follow all the LDS advice – nor were the Mormons saying I should – I learned some pointers I will put into practice as time and my household budget permit.
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