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More than 1 million register for Great Washington ShakeOut

For the third year in a row, the Great Washington ShakeOut has achieved more than 1 million participants, although it’s likely many more will also participate during the annual earthquake drill at 10:20 a.m. on Oct. 20. Registration is a request, not a requirement for residents to practice their drop, cover and hold on skills.

More than 53 million people from across the world will participate this year during ShakeOut, including all of the states and provinces on the West Coast.

People and organizations can sign up to participate at

Preparedness will be key in surviving the next big earthquake to hit the Pacific Northwest. That means being prepared for what you need and where you live – with up to two weeks’ worth of supplies and an emergency “go” kit ready and, for those living on the coast, have an understanding of evacuation routes and the warning signs behind tsunamis – including how NOAA Weather Radio works and the coastal sirens.

On Oct. 20, from noon to 2 p.m., earthquake preparedness experts from the Washington Emergency Management Division and FEMA will join scientists with the Washington Department of Natural Resources and the Pacific Northwest Seismic Network to gather online for a Reddit Ask Me Anything – an online Q&A. The public is invited to ask questions at

We also encourage participants to take photos of themselves participating in the drill and post those photos to social media using the hashtag #washakeout or tag our Twitter account at @waShakeOut.

For media interested in covering the Great Washington ShakeOut, a number of schools will make themselves available. The ShakeOut begins at 10:20 a.m., Oct. 20.

IN GRAYS HARBOR: Ocosta Elementary School has the nation’s first vertical tsunami evacuation platform built above the school’s gymnasium, which opened for the first time in September. After practicing for ShakeOut, all of the school’s children will practice rushing up to the rooftop. Contact Chuck Wallace, Grays Harbor Emergency Management, at (360) 580-2281 or

IN SEATTLE: Seattle Public Schools will make Lowell Elementary School (on the north end of capitol hill) available as youth practice their drop, cover and hold on skills. Contact Luke Duecy at (206) 252-0104 or for more information.

IN TACOMA: Franklin Pierce School District will conduct a formal media event at Midland Elementary School. Contact Katie Gillespie of Franklin Pierce School District at (253) 298-3010 or for more information.

IN OLYMPIA: The Olympia School District will conduct a formal media event at Roosevelt Elementary School. Contact Susan Gifford, Director of Communications & Community Relations at (360) 596-6104 or for more information.

IN CLARK COUNTY: The Camas School District will make Camas Elementary available.  Contact Doreen McKercher, (360) 833-5563 or for more information.

IN BREMERTON: For media interested in video or photos before or during ShakeOut, the Washington Youth Academy in Bremerton will make itself available to have its students practice earthquake safety in advance of Oct. 20 or on that day. Contact Director Larry Pierce at (360) 473-2609 or

Other media outlets can customize their coverage and find local residents, businesses and schools participating through a searchable registry on the website:

Preparedness tips are available here: