5M to Take Part in LA Quake Drill

Southern California readies for 'the Big One' of earthquake-preparedness events
By Rob Quinn,  Newser Staff
Posted Nov 11, 2008 10:52 AM CST

(Newser) – Geologists are hoping a huge party will shake some earthquake awareness into jaded Angelenos, the Wall Street Journal reports. The Great Southern California ShakeOut—an earthquake drill followed by a huge rally—is scheduled for Thursday morning and 5 million people have signed up so far, putting the event on course to be the biggest earthquake-preparedness event in history.

“We want to make it feel cool to duck, cover, and hold,” a local DJ said. Geologists say a huge quake is long overdue in the area but faced public indifference toward regular apocalyptic predictions. Organizers worked on new marketing techniques to raise awareness of the ShakeOut—and saw interest surge after a 5.4 magnitude quake hit near the city in July.