If the earth quakes, Derry, Londonderry students will be ready
Pinkerton Academy junior Steven Hall, foreground, drops, covers and holds under his desk during an earthquake drill Thursday at Pinkerton Academy. The drill was part of an event dubbed the Great Northeast Shakeout. Millions of other people were expected to participate worldwide in Great Shakeout earthquake drills that started at 10:17 a.m. Thursday. (HUNTER McGEE/Union Leader Correspondent)
Students in Ed Vaitones' German class decided to download the noise of earthquake sound effects onto a computer and played them at high volume during the drill, known as the Great Northeast ShakeOut.
The drill started at 10:17 a.m., when an announcement was made and the Pinkerton students joined thousands of other people in the region and millions across the globe who participated in the ShakeOut. It was the first time the school has taken part in the event.
"We've done drills for many other things, but this is the first time we've done it for an earthquake," Hourihane said. "I think we are covering all of the precautions to keep the kids safe no matter what happens."
Principal Mary Coltin said she learned of the ShakeOut earlier this month and jumped at the opportunity for the school to take part.
In the event of an earthquake, students and staff are generally advised to drop, take cover under a sturdy desk or table if there are any nearby, and hold on to that sheltering object until the shaking subsides.
Murabito said she'd already practiced the drill with her students in the classroom setting but had to give them a brief refresher on what to do inside the library, where students typically sit on the floor instead of at desks.
Boettcher is familiar with the drill and said it is necessary, even though the region doesn't have nearly as many powerful earthquakes as California.
Earthquakes can cause more damage in the region compared to California because of the structure of the underlying rocks, she said.
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