Duck, cover, hold: What to do in case of an earthquake

by Kathlyn dela Cruz,

Posted at Jul 11 2014 08:47 PM | Updated as of Jul 30 2015 02:17 AM

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MANILA - Do you know how to protect yourself in case of an earthquake?

According to rescue doctor Ted Esguerra, it is very important that you already prepare yourselves ahead since earthquakes occur without any warning.

"Tingnan natin yung mga struktura na pwedeng bumagsak tulad ng shelves," he said in an interview with ABS-CBN's "Red Alert."

He said you can also prepare by holding earthquake drills inside your home and dividing tasks among your family members.

"Kailangan may mga drill. Pati yung ano ang magiging trabaho ng bawat isa pag lumindol. Alamin niyo kung saan kayo tatakbo at saan kayo magkikita-kita pagkatapos," he said.

Each family should also have an emergency bag, which contains the following items: water, food, transistor radio, flashlight, clothes, whistle, ID, important documents, and first aid kit.

When the shaking starts and you are indoors, Esguerra said you should follow these three steps: duck, cover and hold.

Duck or drop down to the floor, take cover under a sturdy table or other furniture, and hold on to its posts.

But never close your eyes, Esguerra said, so that you will still be aware of what is happening around you.

If there are no tables available where you can take cover, Esguerra suggested that you seek cover against a stable and structurally sound wall.

"At pag namatay na lahat ng ilaw, yung wall ang magiging guide niyo kasi may window at may door," he said.


When the shaking ends, that is the time you can evacuate, according to Ryan Castañeda of the Metropolitan Manila Development Authority (MMDA) Public Safety Office.

"Kapag tumigil na yung paggalaw, tingnan natin sarili natin. Meron ba tayong pinsala, may sugat ba tayo? Kapag wala tayong sugat, hangga't maaari, agad lumikas. Kasi ang aftershocks, pwedeng sumunod agad yan," he said.

When already in an open area, stay away from buildings and power lines, and continue protecting your head by covering it with your hands.

"Hindi naman lahat nakikita natin habang nag-eevacuate tayo. May mga bagay na pwedeng na-damage dulot ng pagyanig na pwedeng mahulog sa atin," Castañeda explained.

Esguerra also shared some tips on what to do when you see someone injured in the aftermath of a quake.

"Pag nadaganan ng mabigat na bagay, alamin mo muna kung masakit ang iyong ulo o leeg. Pag lalong na-injure yan, baka maparalisado pa."

He said you should also talk to the victim and try to make him or her calm.

"Yung sense na there's someone beside you," Esguerra said.