Disasters can occur at any time, with little warning. However, technology is available that can help mitigate damage to infrastructure and even save lives.
This October, the California Governor’s Office of Emergency Services (Cal OES) encourages communities to learn about the latest technology for earthquake warnings that can provide a few moments warning before shaking occurs. This includes:
- Downloading the free MyShake App (free on the Google Play or Apple App Store);
- Enabling location services to allow the MyShake App to connect with ground sensors designed to provide a few moments of warning before shaking; and
- Sharing information about the MyShake App with friends, family, and coworkers that live in California to help keep them safe in the next earthquake.
The MyShake App issues warnings for earthquakes with a magnitude of 4.5 or larger. Wireless Emergency Alerts (text-like emergency messages) are issued for earthquakes with a magnitude of 5.0 or larger. Warnings are currently available in both English and Spanish, depending on the user’s mobile phone settings.
Cal OES also encourages the public to participate in the annual Great California ShakeOut drill, which will take place on October 21, 2021. As part of the earthquake drill, Cal OES encourages the public to download and enable the free MyShake App.
To sign up for the 2021 Great California ShakeOut drill, visit www.shakeout.org/california.
How to Use Resources in the General Audiences Toolkit
This toolkit is designed to help make it easy to share information about earthquake warning resources with friends, family, and others in the community. Toolkits with industry-specific language (medical, education, etc) for organizations to use are also available at earthquake.ca.gov/get-prepared. Toolkits are available in English, Spanish, Chinese (simplified and traditional), Korean, Tagalog, and Vietnamese.
This toolkit contains the following resources to help promote Earthquake Warning California to the general public:
- Newsletter language for emails, letters, or other communication channels;
- Social media text to accompany graphics on social media channels; and
- Social media graphics to help make social media posts eye-catching.
For further information and resources about Earthquake Warning California or to sign up for the Earthquake Warning California newsletter, please visit earthquake.ca.gov.
To learn more about the MyShake App and Earthquake Warning California, visit earthquake.ca.gov.
This summer, don’t let an earthquake catch you off guard! The California Office of Emergency Services (Cal OES) launched the first ever statewide public earthquake warning system, Earthquake Warning California. Californians can receive earthquake warnings with the state’s free MyShake App, which can be downloaded on the Apple App Store or Google Play on smartphones or tablets. The MyShake App is currently available in English and Spanish, with other languages in the works. The technology links mobile devices with ground sensors to send warnings to those in the nearby area when significant shaking is detected so that individuals have a few extra moments to take protective actions, such as to drop, cover, and hold on.
Earthquake Warning California also includes Android Earthquake Alerts that are built into new and updated Android devices and Wireless Emergency Alerts (WEAs) for WEA-capable mobile devices. Cal OES encourages individuals with WEA-capable mobile devices to still download the MyShake App, since the MyShake App and Android Earthquake Alerts are issued when a magnitude 4.5 earthquake is anticipated, while WEAs will alert users when a 5.0 magnitude earthquake is expected.
More about Earthquake Warning California
There are three main ways that earthquake warnings are sent out in California, these are available at no cost:
- The MyShake App is an app that sends warnings to mobile device users. Users receive warnings for earthquakes in their region for earthquakes that are expected to be 4.5 magnitude or larger. The application can be downloaded on the Apple App Store or Google Play and is currently available in both English and Spanish. The MyShake App allows users to crowdsource valuable information about how much shaking people felt and to share information about damage following an earthquake. Location services must be enabled for users to receive earthquake warnings.
- Android Earthquake Alerts are automatically included in all new and updated Android phones used in California. Android users receive warnings for earthquakes in their region that are expected to be 4.5 magnitude or larger. Android Earthquake Alerts uses the phone’s general location to determine which phones receive the alerts. Location services must be enabled for users to receive earthquake warnings.
- Wireless Emergency Alerts (WEAs) are text-like messages in English and Spanish to WEA-capable mobile devices during emergency situations. WEAs may be sent by state and local public safety officials, the National Weather Service, the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children, or the President of the United States. WEA-capable mobile devices send earthquake warnings for earthquakes that are expected to be 5.0 magnitude or larger. For this reason, Cal OES encourages mobile users to use the MyShake App in addition to WEAs.
When you receive an earthquake warning or start to feel shaking, be sure to take protective action such as to drop, cover, and hold on until shaking stops. When seeking cover, make sure your entire body is underneath a sturdy table or desk, or get down near an interior wall or low-lying furniture that will not fall on you. If driving, safely pull over to the side of the road and pull the parking brake. Be sure to stay away from windows, glass, overpasses, or objects that could fall on you.
To learn more about Earthquake Warning California, the MyShake App, or the other earthquake warning resources, visit earthquake.ca.gov.
Social Media Posts
The following can be tailored and copy/pasted to social media channels to encourage followers to download the MyShake App and learn about Earthquake Warning California. You can also tag Cal OES in your post (Twitter: @Cal_OES / Facebook: @CaliforniaOES).
- This fall, make sure you have #earthquake warnings on your mobile device! Download the #MyShakeApp on the Apple App Store or Google Play.
- #DYK – the #MyShakeApp is designed to issue warnings for #earthquakes 4.5M or higher? Download the free app from the Apple App or Google Play store.
- The #MyShakeApp provides a few seconds notice in an #earthquake so you can take protective action before shaking occurs. Learn more at earthquake.ca.gov.
- Be sure to include the #MyShakeApp in your Great #California #ShakeOut drill on October 21! Learn more at earthquake.ca.gov.
- #DYK – This year’s Great California #ShakeOut drill is Oct. 21 to help Californians practice taking cover in an #earthquake! Get the free app today on the Apple App Store or Google Play.
Social Media Graphics
The following links will allow you to download social media graphics. Graphics are sized 1080 px X 1080 px. If you are interested in a higher resolution or different size, please email email@example.com.
Earthquake Warning California Flyer (digital and print)
The following flyer can be displayed digitally or printed and posted in a common area. We encourage municipalities, neighborhood associations / HOAs, and others to print out and share the flyer, or send digitally. The flyer includes a QR Code that can be scanned to pull up the earthquake.ca.gov website.