Contact: Brian Lowe

Tel: (800) 959-4053




For Immediate Release


San Diego, CA – (February 9, 2003) – It was 32 years ago today that the Sylmar earthquake rocked southern California.


The magnitude 6.6 quake struck at 6:01 on the morning of February 9th, 1971 claiming 65 lives and causing widespread destruction in the San Fernando Valley.


The property damages bill totaled more than $500 million. The temblor occurred on the San Fernando Fault zone and at the time, was the worst recorded earthquake to hit the Los Angeles area. The quake lasted for about a minute, its epicenter was located 10 miles east of Newhall.


Because earthquakes strike suddenly and without warning we are almost always caught by surprise, but by being prepared we can at least reduce the extent of damage and loss to household contents.


It’s not hard, time consuming nor expensive to secure the big-ticket items in a home, and it shouldn’t be difficult to find motivation to make the effort, but most of the time most of us make the mistake of putting it in the ‘to do later’ basket.


Today’s anniversary of the destructive Sylmar earthquake should remind us all of what can happen when a major quake strikes. And it should provide us with the impetus to do something now about being prepared.


The message that needs to be emphasized is that by being pro-active we can avoid the trauma and heartache, as well as the expense, of having to replace lost or broken possessions. Preventive action now could be priceless later.


Another common error that a lot of us make is allowing ourselves to be lulled into thinking there won’t be another earthquake in our region. Geologists recently put that theory to bed by revealing on average, earthquakes of magnitude 7.5 have rumbled along the San Andreas Fault every 105 years.


The last one was 145 years ago and while scientists don’t know precisely when the next BIG one will hit, they say we’re overdue. That’s why it’s crucial for people to be prepared.


You can make a start by checking out the ‘Earthquake Safety Center’ at your local hardware store.


Preparedness is our best defense against earthquakes, because not only will it protect our possessions, but it might also help save the life of a loved one.


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