The Great Oregon ShakeOut is part of an annual global self-led drill that encourages people to prepare for and practice how to stay safe during an earthquake. More than 600,000 Oregonians have already registered at to take part in this year’s event.

This year’s Great Oregon ShakeOut earthquake drill will take place at 10:19 a.m. today.

ShakeOut is a self-led drill; no matter where you are at 10:19 a.m., you should Drop, Cover and Hold On for one minute as if an earthquake were happening at that time.

  • Drop immediately onto your hands and knees. This position protects you from being knocked down and allows you to stay low and crawl to a nearby shelter. If you use a wheelchair or walker, lock your wheels.
  • Cover your head and neck with one arm and hand. If a sturdy table or desk is nearby, crawl underneath it for shelter. This protects you from objects that might fall or topple over, such as unsecured items on shelves, ceiling fans, bookshelves or televisions, and other debris. If there is no nearby shelter, crawl next to an interior wall away from windows. Cover your head with your arms. Remain on your knees and bend over to protect vital organs.
  • Hold On until the shaking stops. If under a shelter, such as a desk or table hold onto it with one hand and be ready to move with it as the ground moves up and down and side-to-side. If there is no shelter, hold onto your head and neck with both arms and hands.

Drop, Cover and Hold On is the national standard for earthquake safety and evidence suggests it offers the best overall level of earthquake protection in most situations, including from falling and flying debris and other nonstructural hazards.

This is in large part because Oregon is one of the most earthquake-prone areas in the continental U.S., with several fault lines that cause dozens of earthquakes every year. The most known earthquake threat is the Cascadia Subduction Zone, a 700-mile fault located off the Pacific coast that puts Oregon at risk for a 9.0+ magnitude earthquake. A quake of that size could cause five to seven minutes of shaking, followed by a tsunami of up to 100 feet in height that would devastate coastal areas.