In case you forgot: we live in earthquake country

Last early Sunday morning, many of us in the Bay Area were rudely awakened by a strong quake centered in Napa. This dramatic event was a serious wake-up call that reminded all of us of the possibility – no, the inevitability – of quakes in our neck of the woods, and the fact that we all need to prepare.

We at Paragon have gotten our hands on a USGS Earthquake Safety pamphlet that deals with the steps of preparation to minimize the negative effects of an earthquake. Now is an opportune time as any to review these steps.

First off, it’s crucial to get connected. As the pamphlet says: “Preparedness is all about people.” So what does this mean? It means turning to your community before disaster strikes can help strengthen your ties in the event of one – and help you get through it at least that little bit better. Options include connecting through digital networks such as Facebook, Twitter and Google Drive, meeting your neighbors on Nextdoor or signing up for AirBnB so you’ll have access to a place to stay should your home be damaged.

Second, you need to gather supplies. A good rule of thumb, according to the pamphlet, is to have three days’ worth of supplies, including water, a first-aid kit and a flashlight and extra batteries. Other supplies include warm and sturdy clothes, a battery-operated or hand-crank radio and cash.

The site also has a suite of videos for you to watch in order to get better prepared. They feature disaster survivors from Tokyo and New York City, as well as members of local community hubs.

Finally, it’s time to make a plan. Select your group, pick an out-of-state contact and agree on a place to meet. This section includes a complete PDF to help you with accomplishing this task.

No time like the present to start preparing. A little forethought goes a long way.

Dreaming of San Francisco? Cece Blase offers local advice to San Francisco buyers, sellers and owners– and feeds the dreams of those who wish they could live in Tony Bennett’s ‘City by the Bay.’ Call 415-577-0809 or email

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