Suryakant Jena

The National Disaster Management Authority (NDMA) has cautioned people to adopt precautionary measures be it in construction of house to simple do’s and don’ts to ensure safety of one and others during earthquakes .

The country’s premier disaster mitigation organization took to Twitter to share a list of tips for people to follow before, during and after an earthquake.

The NDMA has suggested that citizens should consult a structural engineer before building their home and must follow the BIS 2016 code at all cost. The Bureau of Indian Standards (BIS) has specified a technical document on National Building Code of India 2016 (NBC 2016) in which all provisions relating to planning, design, construction and operation and maintenance of buildings are covered.

NDMA’s list of Do’s and Don’ts in case of earthquake

Before an earthquake

House review ---

  • Repair deep plaster cracks. Get expert advice if needed.
  • Fasten shelves securely to walls.
  • Place large or heavy objects on lower shelves.
  • Store breakable items in low, closed cabinets with latches.
  • Hang heavy items away from places where people sit/sleep.
  • Repair defective electrical wiring and leaky gas connections.

Develop an emergency communication plan---

  • In case of separation, develop a plan beforehand for reuniting after the disaster.
  • Have an emergency home/office site evacuation plan ready.
  • Ask an out-of-state relative or friend to serve as the 'family contact' after the disaster.
  • Make sure everyone in the family knows their name, address, and phone number.

During and after earthquake

  • Avoid entering damaged buildings or structures.
  • Do not light matchsticks or gas.
  • Use stairs instead of elevators.
  • Call out for medical help in case you see any injured person.
  • Only consider information from the authorities.

If Trapped under Debris

  • Do not light a match.
  • Cover your mouth with a handkerchief or clothing.
  • Tap on a pipe or wall with an object to get located.
  • Use a whistle if one is available.
  • Shout only as a last resort.