Great Oregon Shakeout approaches after jolting start to earthquake preparedness month

Emma Coke, OMN Copy Editor

Corvallis residents got a good reminder to practice earthquake preparedness earlier this month when a 4.4 magnitude earthquake shook the Oregon State University Corvallis campus.  

The magnitude 4.4 earthquake occurred on Oct. 7 early in the morning, leaving residents with earthquakes fresh on their minds ahead of the Great Oregon ShakeOut, the statewide earthquake drill taking place Oct. 20 at 10:20 a.m.

Oregon and the rest of the Pacific Northwest is no stranger to these earthquakes due to the Cascadia Subduction Zone, a 600 mile long fault line that runs from Northern California up to British Columbia and 70-100 miles off the Pacific coast. 

According to the Oregon Department of Emergency Management, “Oregon has the potential for a 9.0+ magnitude earthquake caused by the Cascadia Subduction Zone and a resulting tsunami of up to 100 feet in height that will impact the coastal area”.

There hasn’t been an earthquake of that magnitude since 1770 and “currently, scientists are predicting that there is about a 37 percent chance that a megathrust earthquake of 7.1+ magnitude in this fault zone will occur in the next 50 years,” according to the Oregon Department of Emergency Management. 

“If we don’t practice or take the time to learn about our surrounding hazards, we will react poorly when the Cascadia Subduction Zone or any localized earthquake occurs,” Michael Bamberger, manager of emergency preparedness at OSU said.

OSU will be participating this year. 

To participate in the Great Oregon ShakeOut, you can register online and at 10:20 a.m., stop, drop, cover and hold for 60 seconds. 

“A fast response to an earthquake can save lives, including your own,” Green stated.


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