Earthquakes

Resources

Earthquake Resources

Our Global Hazards Atlas provides a map showing recent earthquakes and a "ShakeMap" that models estimated ground motion and shaking intensity following significant earthquakes. You can also use the Global Hazards Atlas to review significant historical earthquakes, tectonic plate boundaries, and more. 

Related Hazards

  • Ground shaking and ground displacement
  • Landslides and debris falls
  • Fire from broken gas or power lines
  • Flooding from ruptured dams or levees
  • Tsunami (generated by undersea earthquakes)


Precautions

  • Have a disaster supply kit ready in case of evacuation, including a radio and batteries.
  • Prepare a family communication plan.
  • Know how to turn off water and gas supplies to your home.
  • Inspect your home for potential earthquake hazards; secure top-heavy furniture to the wall and place heaviest objects on bottom shelves.
     

What to Do During an Earthquake

  • If you are inside, seek shelter under a sturdy desk or table and hold on. Stay away from windows and glass fixtures. Remain inside until the shaking stops.
  • Do not use elevators.
  • If you are outside, stay away from power lines and objects that can fall, such as streetlights, buildings, and trees.
  • If you are in a vehicle, pull off the road but do not stop on or under bridges, overpasses, or tunnels.


For more Information

USGS Earthquake Hazards Program

National Earthquake Hazard Reduction Program (NEHRP)

Can Earthquakes Be Predicted?

Although some major earthquakes are preceded by foreshocks, there is currently no reliable method to accurately predict the time, location, and magnitude of a quake. However, the United Nations Environmental Programme/Global Resource Information Database provides information on global earthquake probability and intensity. View earthquake intensity zones.