‘The Great ShakeOut’ is set for Thursday

Updated: Oct. 13, 2020 at 4:47 PM CDT
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CARBONDALE, Ill. (KFVS) - One of the most prominent fault lines in the country sits right here in the Heartland.

A worldwide earthquake practice is set for October 15.

Drop, cover and hold on. Those 3 moves can potentially save your life if an earthquake hits the Heartland.

SIU Stem Education Research Professor Harvey Henson said this applies to everyone.

“There’s no way to predict and earthquake, there’s no early warning system like for some storms or other natural disasters, earthquakes happen without warning," he said.

And that is why the Great ShakeOut is set for October 15.

“A national event, actually a worldwide event, and regionally it’s an opportunity for everyone. It’s an all play, multi-generational opportunity to practice earthquake safety," he said.

If you look back at the 1811 and 1812 earthquakes, Henson said we could have another major one at any time.

“With that history and the geology, we understand there’s a chance a large earthquake can happen again maybe in our lifetime.”

Most people do not feel anything under a 4.0 magnitude earthquake Henson said, but anything over that can be felt across the region.

“Most people will feel a magnitude 4 about anywhere in the Midwest. Four-and-a-half to a 5, you will feel that all over the Midwest. Even in Florida people reported feeling it last time in 2008," he said.

Henson said being in an active area, it’s important to practice.

“I would just take this wonderful opportunity to remind folks we do live in a seismically active area. And if you are in Carbondale, unfortunately, you have the New Madrid seismic zone down to our south but two other seismic zones to the Northeast and to the Northwest that impend on this area.”

According to the Illinois Department of Transportation, all bridges and overpasses in southern Illinois are designed and built for seismic impact.

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