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Quake anniversary offers reminder

Barrels inside tsunami preparedness containers in Cannon Beach contain emergency items for local residents. The containers include family cache items, medical, administrative, and tool chest support containers as well as tourist, employee and visitor kits. The containers sit at approximately 100 feet, 20 feet above what earthquake experts believe to be the maximum tsunami inundation zone in Cannon Beach and other areas along the Oregon Coast.

Barrels inside tsunami preparedness containers in Cannon Beach contain emergency items for local residents. The containers include family cache items, medical, administrative, and tool chest support containers as well as tourist, employee and visitor kits. The containers sit at approximately 100 feet, 20 feet above what earthquake experts believe to be the maximum tsunami inundation zone in Cannon Beach and other areas along the Oregon Coast. Photo by Cory Grogan, Oregon Emergency Management

Sunday marks the anniversary of the great Cascadia Subduction Zone earthquake that shook the Pacific Northwest on Jan. 26, 1700.

The magnitude 9.0 "megathrust" quake struck off the coastline of Oregon, Washington, Northern California and British Columbia. Scientists believe Oregon is within a window of time where another massive earthquake could occur.

“We know a major earthquake and tsunami similar to the one that struck off the coast of Japan could hit Oregon at any time,” said Althea Rizzo, Geologic Hazards Program Coordinator for the Office of Emergency Management.

The Cascadia Subduction Zone is recognized as one of the world's most dangerous faults, posing a significant earthquake hazard for Oregon and other western states.

Many of the region's most highly populated cities including Portland, Seattle, and Vancouver in British Columbia would be effected.

Experts say impacts to the Oregon Coast would be similar to that along the coastline of Japan after the 2011 earthquake and tsunami, and are encouraging individuals, families and communities to prepare.

Rizzo said there are many actions that can be taken to prepare for the next earthquake including talking with your family about an emergency plan, creating a supply cache, and learning basic first aid skills.

To learn more about the threat in Oregon and find resources that can help you prepare go to: http://www.oregon.gov/OMD/OEM/Pages/preparedness_information.aspx at Oregon Office of Emergency Management website or the American Red Cross website at http://www.redcross.org/prepare/disaster/earthquake.

“Prepare now and be your own survival story,” Rizzo added.

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