Public Health Information in Response to an Earthquake
If your power has been out:
- WHEN IN DOUBT, THROW IT OUT!
- Food will last longer by keeping the refrigerator doors closed.
- The refrigerator will keep food cool 4-6 hours depending on the kitchen temperature.
- Freezer units should keep food frozen for 2 days.
- A half-full freezer unit should keep things frozen about 1 day.
Purification of Water for Emergency Use
- If you have any concerns about your water quality, use bottled water for your drinking and cooking purposes. Treat water obtained from water vending machines in the affected area, the same as tap water.
- Strain cloudy water through a coffee filter or clean cloth.
- BOIL THE WATER FOR AT LEAST FIVE FULL MINUTES BEFORE USING. If boiling is not possible, purify by adding liquid chlorine laundry bleach; 2 drops per quart of clear water or 4 drops per quart of cloudy water, mix thoroughly, and let stand for 30 minutes.
If bottled water is not available:
- Disposal of dead livestock is permitted at: Simi Valley Landfill, Simi, 805/522-3083.
- Small animals are accepted at Toland Landfill, Santa Paula; Monday through Friday, 7 AM-4 PM, 805/525-8217.
- Livestock may also be buried on ranch or agricultural property where they're raised. Recommend at least 2 feet of cover.
- For debris removal or demolition services consult your local phone directory.
You can discourage rodents by:
- Removing shelter - materials such as wood and debris.
- Keeping trash in tightly covered containers, remove unused pet food.
- Rodent-proofing buildings.
- Using poison bait or traps.
- Clean and dispose of all spilled or contaminated food in tightly covered containers.
Septic System Information
If your property is damaged by an earthquake and your house is intact, it is recommended that an inspection of the existing septic system be performed before using any plumbing in the house. Damage may have been sustained to the septic system, such as a fiberglass septic tank or piping, which could cause sewage to surface or backup into the structure. An inspection of the septic system should include:
- Uncover the septic tank to check for damage.
- If the tank is intact then run water from the house to the septic tank to ensure the building sewer line is working.
- Uncover the distribution box, if present, and check for damage to the box and leach lines.
- In the event a distribution box is not present, then look for water surfacing in the leach field or flowing back into the septic tank. These are signs of line failure.
Any significant repairs to the septic system will require a permit issued by the Environmental Health Division.