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Is your home earthquake-ready? How to prepare for the big one

Is your home earthquake-ready? How to prepare for the big one
A Fillmore house shows the damage from the Jan. 17, 1994, Northridge quake. (Los Angeles Times)

It's been so long since Los Angeles suffered a major earthquake -- the magnitude 6.7 Northridge quake was 20 years ago in January -- that it's been easy to put disaster preparedness on a back burner.

But Monday's 6:25 a.m. jolt was a strong reminder that earthquakes are not an "if" but a "when" in Southern California.

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Luckily, there are things you can do to help protect your home and family. Many are easy DIY projects -- relocate heavy mirrors and wall hangings away from sleeping areas, install latches on cupboards where glass and ceramics are stored, anchor valuable keepsakes with adhesive or putty. Some you might want to hire a professional to do for you.

The chart below shows points in your home that may be vulnerable in a quake and how to fix them. Also included is a chart of what to store in your earthquake survival kits.

When shakers occur, it reminds us that earthquakes can strike Southern California without warning. This could be an opportunity to make your house safer and get earthquake preparations ready before the next damaging quake.

ALSO:

Emergency 101: Earthquake kits, pet evacuations and new advice - See more at: http://latimesblogs.latimes.com/home_blog/2011/03/preparing-for-earthquakes.html?tumblr#sthash.2zrzV0Xj.dpuf
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