Thousands of Washington residents participating in earthquake drill today at 10:18 a.m. (PDT)

Join the thousands of people in Washington State (680,000 registered at last count) who will Drop, Cover, and Hold On at 10:18 a.m. today in the 2012 Great Washington ShakeOut!   The organizers suggest businesses, schools and other organizations hold drills this morning but any time within two weeks of October 18 counts — some have difficult-to-reschedule events while others, like REI stores, will conduct drills for employees before public business hours.

This annual drill is a great way for you, your family or organization to become better prepared to survive and recover quickly from big earthquakes.

You can’t have a realistic earthquake drill without the sound of rumbling ground. Among the tools provided by the Great Washington ShakeOut are scripts, announcements, planning lists and… sound effects. At the very least, it’s a good way to test your speaker system’s bass response.

NOTE: If you live in one of Washington’s outer coastal counties, you are scheduled for a tsunami siren test at 10:18 a.m. today.

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