Step 7: Reconnect and Restore
In the days and weeks that follow a major earthquake, restore daily life by reconnecting with others, repairing damage, and rebuilding community. You, your family, friends and neighbors can come together to start the process? of recovery.
The first days after the earthquake:
- Do not enter your home until you know it's safe.
- Check for gas leaks, chemical spills, damaged electrical wiring and broken water pipes.
- Monitor local radio or television reports about where to get emergency housing, food, first aid, clothing and financial assistance.
- Check on your neighbors, especially seniors or the disabled.
- Use your refrigerated and frozen food first and save the canned goods for later.
- Contact your insurance agent or company right away to begin your claims process. Keep records of any repair or cleaning costs. Take pictures of damage to your property or home.
The first weeks after the earthquake:
- If your gas was turned off, contact the gas company to turn it back on.
- If the electricity went off and then came back on, check your appliances or electronic equipment for damage.
- Contact the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA), or other federal and state agencies to find out about financial assistance for your home, apartment, farm or business.
- If you need repairs to your home, check with the Contractors State Licensing Board to ensure your contractor is fully licensed in California. Fraud is common following a disaster.
- Talk with your family about how they are feeling. Children and older adults are of special concern in the aftermath of disasters. Contact local faith-based organizations, voluntary agencies, or professionals for counseling.
- Reach out to neighborhood or community organizations and get involved. Your voice is important in deciding how your community will rebuild in the years to come.
See: emergency numbers