Civil Defence | Recommendations for Public Self-Protection and Safety Measures in case of Earthquake
Defence Redefined
Published on 29/09/2021 at 08:45


At home / office / school:

  • Properly attach shelves and bookshelves to the walls. 
  • Do not place refrigerators and tall furniture in places where they may move and block potential exits.
  • Place large and heavy objects as well as anything that can easily fall or break at a low spot.
  • Remove heavy objects over beds and sofas. 
  • Secure lamps and ceiling fans.
  • Mark the most secure places at home, at school, at your workplace to resort to them in case of an earthquake:
  • under resistant tables, desks, or benches
  • away from glass surfaces and libraries
  • away from exterior walls
  • Check proper operation of the electricity and gas supply network. 
  • Inform your family members/office staff about how the main switches on electricity, water, and gas are off.
  • Get a first aid kit. 
  • Place a fire extinguisher in an accessible place and practise using it.

Also read: European Commission | Equipment Procurement Program for Civil Protection


If you are indoors:

  • Stay calm. Do not panic.
  • Cover yourself under a sturdy piece of furniture (table or desk).
  • If there is no such furniture, kneel in the middle of the room, reducing your height as much as possible and protect your head and neck using your hands.
  • Avoid large glass surfaces (windows, glass partitions) or furniture and objects that may injure you.
  • Do not try to leave the house.
  • Do not go out on the balcony.

If you are in a tall building:

  • Move away from windows and exterior walls.
  • Do not use the elevator to escape. There is a risk of falling or getting stuck in it due to power cuts or distortion in its drivers. 
  • Do not stand near open windows, on balconies, or on terrace edges. You can fall into the void. 

If you are in an entertainment venue, mall, or department store:

  • Stay in the area until the vibration stops.
  • Do not get carried away by the panicked crowd that moves erratically towards the exits, because you risk being trampled.

If you are outdoors:

  • Avoid standing near buildings, rocks, electric poles, or objects that may fall and injure you. 
  • If you have a bag or briefcase with you, cover your head with them.
  • Get away from the shores. After a strong earthquake, high waves may be created that may swiftly sweep the shores. 

If you are in the car: 

  • Park as fast and carefully as you can away from high-rise buildings, piles of rocks. 
  • Avoid passing through tunnels, bridges, or overpasses. 


  • Immediately help protect children, but also the disabled, the sick, or the elderly. 
  • If a fire breaks out somewhere, put it out before it gets bigger.
  • Do not touch power cords or objects that touch cables. You are at risk of electric shock. 
  • If you are trapped somewhere and you cannot escape, try in every way to give signs of life, so that rescue teams can locate you.
  • Do not attempt to move a seriously injured person unless their life is in immediate danger. 
  • Do not enter damaged buildings until the competent authorities have assured you that it is safe to do so.
  • Do not use the phone unless needed. Blocking telephone lines prevents the coordination of the actions of the competent Services and the mission dealing with the effects of the earthquake. 
  • Respond to calls for help, but do not move around unnecessarily, so that rescue teams can move around unhindered. 

Source: Civil Defence

Also read: European Commission | Modernization Program on Civil Protection Equipment




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