COLUMBIA - Students at Paxton Keeley Elementary are practicing a safety drill Thursday morning. It is not stop, drop and roll but rather drop, cover and hold on. The students are participating in the ShakeOut earthquake drill.
More than 400,000 Missourian are participating in this drill on the 201st anniversary of the state's worst earthquake on record.
The Great New Madrid quake that occurred on February 7, 1812 devastated much of the southeast Missouri. The earthquake briefly reversed the course of the Mississippi River, was felt in the East Coast and church bells reportedly rang as far away as New England.
Missouri is one of nine states in the New Madrid Seismic Zone. Missouri is located on the New Madrid Seismic Zone which is the most active earthquake zone east of the Rocky Mountains.
State Emergency Management Agency has information about earthquake safety and resources to help prepare for the Great Central U.S.
SEMA website lists what to do before an earthquake:
•Identify safe spots and danger zones in each room.
•Buy a large garbage can to store bottled drinking water, canned and dried non-perishable food that does not need to be cooked (tuna and crackers, for example), a can opener, flashlights, first aid supplies, battery powered radio, seasonal clothing and blankets. It may also become your "go kit" if you need to leave your home.
•Know how to shut off all utilities.
•Be sure your house is firmly anchored to its foundation.
•Anchor overhead lighting fixtures.
•Store bottled foods, glass, china and other breakable items on low shelves or in cabinets that can fasten shut. Place large or heavy objects on lower shelves.
•Brace bookshelves and heavy furniture to walls to keep them from toppling.
•Repair defective electrical wiring.
•Install flexible lines to water heaters, gas stoves and other appliances.
•Securely fasten water heaters and gas appliances to wall studs.
•Buy earthquake insurance.
Click on the link above to view tips on what to do during and after an earthquake.