Are you and your of­fice ready for the Big One?

South Waikato News - - FRONT PAGE -

Staff at Toko­roa and Taumaranui hospi­tal are gear­ing up for the coun­try’s big­gest earth­quake drill or­gan­ised by Civil De­fence later this month.

Their hos­pi­tals are tak­ing part in the Shake­out earth­quake pre­pared­ness cam­paign lead­ing up to a drill at 9.26am on Wed­nes­day, Septem­ber 26.

Civil De­fence aims to have one mil­lion peo­ple par­tic­i­pate in the drill, and the Waikato Dis­trict Health Board’s emer­gency plan­ning team, in­clud­ing rep­re­sen­ta­tives from Toko­roa and Tau­marunui hos­pi­tals, are get­ting right be­hind the op­er­a­tion to ‘‘ drop, cover and hold’’ dur­ing the drill.

Toko­roa & Tau­marunui Shake­out com­mit­tee chair­man John Ing­ham said pa­tients and vis­i­tors would be ad­vised what was hap­pen­ing well be­fore the 9.26am scram­ble to get un­der tables and desks or un­der door­ways.

They have al­ready pro­duced a pro­mo­tional DVD to screen in the hos­pi­tals in the leadup, fea­tur­ing many of the staff from both hos­pi­tals.

All New Zealan­ders are be­ing en­cour­aged to join the ex­er­cise, with Civil De­fence en­cour­ag­ing the pub­lic to be pre­pared for the ‘‘big one.’’ It is push­ing the ‘‘drop, cover and hold’’ ad­vice:

Drop to your hands and knees – be­fore the quake knocks you down.

Cover as much of your body un­der a sturdy ta­ble or other form of shel­ter, and cover your head and neck with your arms. Hold on un­til the shak­ing stops. Civil De­fence wants to see a higher level of pre­pared­ness for dis­as­ter. Hav­ing emer­gency plans, spot­ting haz­ards, stock­ing up emer­gency gear and hav­ing a ‘‘get home’’ kit are in­cluded in the ex­er­cise.

To reg­is­ter go to shake­out­is­ter.

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