Accessibility Contact Us
000 for fire or life threatening emergencies
132 500 for SES emergency assistance
13 DFES (13 3337) for emergency information
General enquiries Hearing or speech impaired contacts
Home Publications Links Contact Us

During an Earthquake

Home Safety Information
Earthquake
During an Earthquake

No matter where you are when an earthquake happens, it is important to follow the advice of emergency services, stay calm, watch for hazards and help others if possible.

If an earthquake strikes and you are indoors:

  • Protect yourself
  • Stay away from glass, windows, outside doors, walls, and anything that could fall, such as fans, light fixtures or furniture
  • Get under a sturdy table or desk and DROP, COVER and HOLD
  • Staying in one safe place during the shaking will help you avoid being hit by falling objects and from tripping or falling
  • Stay inside until the shaking stops – wait for any aftershocks
  • Do not use matches, candles or any kind of flame, as there may be leaking gas.

How to DROP COVER and HOLD ON

DROP to the ground

COVER your head and neck with your arms and shelter under a sturdy desk or table. If there isn’t safe shelter nearby, crouch alongside a bench or an inside wall.

HOLD ON to your shelter and be prepared to move with it until the shaking stops

If an earthquake strikes and you are outdoors:

  • If you are outside, duck, cover and hold on away from things that could fall over or fall down. The more open the space, the better
  • Keep well clear of buildings and other structures, power lines, trees and vehicles
  • If in a vehicle, stop in an open area and listen to your car radio for advice
  • If trapped, do not move about or kick up dust, cover your mouth with a handkerchief or clothing
  • Tap on a pipe or wall so rescuers can locate you, shout only as a last resort as shouting can cause you to inhale dangerous amounts of dust.

If you are at the beach:

  • If you experience strong shaking for more than 30 seconds, move away from the beach
  • If the strong shaking lasts longer than 60 seconds, go to higher ground.
© 2021 Government of Western Australia. All rights reserved.