TERRE HAUTE, Ind. (WTHI) - During National Preparedness month, one organization says 'watch out for the quakes'.
The Indiana Geological Survey brought their Quake Cottage to Indiana State University's Wolf Field Wednesday.
The cottage simulates an actual earthquake, the type this state has experienced dozens of times in the past.
"That's when bookcases, china cabinets can turn over, dishes come out of the cabinets, pictures, mirrors fall off the walls…A lot of people are shocked at how violent or intense the shaking is for a magnitude 7,” said Walter Gray of the Indiana Geological Survey.
The Quake Cottage is a moveable earthquake simulator. The simulator mimics the shaking experience during a real earthquake while you sit in a mock living room.
"So people can feel the intense shaking that's associated with those events,” said Gray.
We saw the damage different levels of earthquakes can do and at a mere 5.5 magnitude, you have to grab on to both sides of the seat to avoid being thrown to the floor.
"Hot water heaters can walk away from the wall. If that's fueled by natural gas, that can start a fire. That's when you start losing the internal, non-structural components of your home. As well as, that's when you'll start seeing some exterior components of the building like the masonry work start to fall off,” Gray said.
Indiana doesn't seem like a big earthquake state, but it sits on a major fault line.
"Since 1817, we've only had 43 above a magnitude 3, and most of those have been relatively minor earthquakes,” said Gray.
Gray said we've lucked out in those years. The state is fully capable of experiencing a 7 magnitude and we've had them in the past.
That's why Gray says it's important to have an emergency disaster plan.
"Take a look around your home. Make sure you have all the vital components, things that are important to you, make sure you have them restrained somehow," Gray said. "Spend some time thinking about, do I know where my shut-off switches are, do I have an emergency disaster kit.”
For more information about an emergency disaster kit, visit their website.
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