Campus urged to get ready for UOAlert! and Great Oregon Shakeout

The Duck participates in earthquake drill

The Great Oregon Shakeout, a nationwide earthquake preparedness drill, will be held on Thursday, Oct. 17. UO Emergency Management urges faculty and staff to participate in the exercise and register beforehand for UOAlert! text messages.

The Oregon Department of Geology and Mineral Industries (DOGAMI) predicts the chances of an earthquake within the next 50 years in the Cascadia Subduction Zone to be as high as 37 percent. The oceanic plate continues to slide beneath the continental plate, meeting at the subduction zone. Oregon is a geologic mirror of Northern Japan; the predicted earthquake is expected to be of similar magnitude as the 2011 Tohoku quake in Japan.

The Great Shakeout began in Southern California in 2008 and is now coordinated regionally. The drill offers a chance to practice the latest earthquake response: Drop, Cover and Hold On. It aims to prepare for earthquakes nationwide, and more than 16.2 million people are expected to participate in the annual event.

UO Emergency Management has scheduled a test of the UOAlert! system to coincide with the Great Oregon Shakeout. The purpose of the UO Alert! system is to allow students, faculty and staff to receive information via text message about critical campus safety issues. UO Emergency Management recommends registering by 5 p.m. on Sunday, Oct. 13, in order to receive the Shakeout test message.

Additional emergency preparedness tips and information are available on the UO Emergency Management website.

- by Sarah MacKenzie, UO Office of Strategic Communications intern