Costa Rica is preparing for the II National earthquake evacuation drill, but this time it will be in virtual mode, so that social bubbles remain in their homes, complying with safety provisions issued by the Ministry of Health. This was announced this past Wednesday by the president of the National Commission for Risk Prevention and Emergency Attention (CNE), Alexander Solís Delgado.

Solís Delgado indicated that “this year the Pandemic presented us with a new challenge, to prepare for an earthquake in times of a major health crisis, so it was decided to postpone the drill for October 13th, within the framework of the International Day for Disaster Risk Reduction 2020.

Taking into account that the current situation of the country requires us to adapt and take new measures, it is important to have the participation of different sectors and, especially, the community and family sector, since the Pandemic forces us to change even the way of evacuating in a time when self-protection and distancing are necessary to minimize the spread of COVID-19, Solís said.

How should the population prepare to respond to an earthquake in the middle of a Pandemic?

The microsite www.simulacro.cr will provide practical measures so that an earthquake does not take you by surprise. The first thing is that it promotes the creation of the Emergency Plan with a series of very simple but effective steps.

Interactive tools are available to create your emergency plan, identify evacuation routes, pack your emergency briefcase with additional supplies such as alcohol and a mask, and evacuate to a safe area to take shelter after an earthquake.

Why is it important to prepare for an earthquake in times of a Pandemic?

Costa Rica is a highly seismic country, which is why it is essential to have drills that improve or strengthen response capacities to safeguard human life during a real emergency.

Also, the training and knowledge of the emergency brigades in the workplace are adapted so that they can guide both the officials who work in the offices and those who carry out their procedures through remote working.

How can I participate?

To participate in the simulation, people must enter the microsite www.simulacro.cr In it, you will find a participation form to join this initiative by completing the basic information.

Also, the microsite has educational tools so that people can enter and participate in this exercise that culminates on the day that participation in the drill will be reported virtually, which is Tuesday, October 13th.

Some of these materials include videos by experts explaining why we are a seismic country. Besides, it has guides on how to make an emergency plan, how to identify evacuation routes, and how to prepare an emergency briefcase that includes masks and gel alcohol.

On October 13th, 2020, social bubbles will be able to make their report of the earthquake evacuation drill in virtual mode at 10 a.m. To this end, an App will be made available, in which an earthquake of considerable magnitude will be activated (virtually) and social bubbles will be able to test the 7 steps of the Emergency Plan, which includes an emergency briefcase, evacuation routes, and meeting point.

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