South Carolina to #ShakeOut for Earthquake Awareness Week

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Governor Nikki Haley has proclaimed Earthquake Awareness Week for 2016 be observed October 16-22 in South Carolina.  The S.C. Emergency Management Division encourages everyone to take this opportunity to learn about our state’s seismic fault system and how best to prepare for earthquakes.  A highlight of the week will be the Great Southeast ShakeOut on Thursday, October 20 at 10:20 in the morning. The theme for this year’s state Earthquake Awareness Week is “AFTERSHOCK:130” which will highlight the 130th anniversary of the 1886 Summerville/Charleston earthquake.


There have been 16 low-magnitude earthquakes recorded in South Carolina since October 2015. Our state experiences approximately 10 to 20 earthquakes a year according to geologists with the College of Charleston.  The epicenter of the largest earthquake ever recorded along the eastern United States seaboard was just outside of Charleston on August 31, 1886.  The 7.3 magnitude quake devastated the region and was felt from Chicago, Ill, to Cuba.  According to a study commissioned by SCEMD, an earthquake of similar magnitude would result in tremendous loss of life, severe property damage and extreme economic loss.  Results of the study are detailed in the South Carolina Earthquake Guide.


As of Tuesday morning, more than 257,000 people in South Carolina have signed up for the Great Southeast ShakeOut Earthquake Drill on October 20.  Similar to other emergency preparedness drills sponsored by SCEMD, the signal to begin the drill will be broadcast at 10:20 a.m. on NOAA tone-alert weather radio and broadcast media. 


Registration on the Southeast ShakeOut site is an important part of this event.  The Great ShakeOut is open to everyone in South Carolina.  To register, go to  Be sure to include the total number of people taking part in the drill with you.  More than 1.9 million participants total from South Carolina, North Carolina, Georgia, Florida, Maryland, Delaware, Virginia, West Virginia and Washington, D.C., have registered so far.


The South Carolina Earthquake Guide is available statewide via the Senior P.R.E.P. section at every Walgreens store in the state.  The S.C. Earthquake Guide is the first publication that details South Carolina-specific information on what citizens should do before, during and after a major earthquake. 


Everyone is encouraged to use #ShakeOut when promoting earthquake awareness this week.



South Carolina Earthquake Resources: