On Thursday, Oct. 17, Redlands residents will join millions of Californians to participate at the annual ShakeOut International Day of Action, scheduled at 10:17 a.m.

The drill’s goal to increase awareness and readiness for a major earthquake. During the drill, all city departments at the Civic Center, Police Annex and other facilities will be evacuated.

Those offices will be closed briefly and customers doing business at that time will be advised of the evacuation and directed where to go. The inconvenience will last a few minutes.

 The drill follows the Federal Emergency Management Agency’s national Preparedness Month in September.

According to earthquakecountry.org, every resident should know what steps to take before, during, and after a major earthquake.  

Before the earthquake, residents should secure their space, plan to exit safely by creating a disaster plan, organize disaster supplies and minimize financial hardship by organizing important documents.

During and just after the earthquake, residents should drop, cover and hold during the entire time of shaking.

People should evacuate, if necessary, check and help the injured, if any, and prevent further damage.

Residents should also be ready for aftershocks that may continue for several days, weeks and months after large earthquakes.

After an earthquake, residents should reconnect and restore with family and neighbors and help rebuild, if necessary.

People should use text messages to communicate to keep lines open.

Also, people should contact their insurance company to assist with the damages, if any.

Recent earthquakes serve as a reminder that larger earthquakes can occur with little to no warning.

It is well documented that the Southern California region has several active earthquake faults and experts warn that the region is overdue for a major quake.