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Education

Wichita Public Schools Mandates Earthquake Drills After Increase In Tremors

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A screenshot from a video produced by USD 259 explaining the FEMA's Drop, Cover and Hold earthquake response plan.

Students and staff at Wichita Public Schools will be practicing mandatory earthquake drills for the first time ever.

Students in USD 259 will watch an instructional video produced by the district and then practice FEMA's Drop, Cover and Hold earthquake response plan beginning this week.

Terri Moses, executive director of safety services for the district, says the drills were an option for schools to practice last year, but due to the increase of earthquake activity in Kansas, they are now mandatory.

"As time has gone on and as they've continued, we've gotten more questions from people about what to do," Moses says. 

As part of the drill, students will be instructed to drop to the ground and get under a desk or table; cover their head and neck with one hand; and hold onto the desk or table to keep it in place. Moses says the goal of the drill is to teach students how to protect themselves in the case of a major earthquake.

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Follow Abigail Beckman on Twitter @AbigailKMUW.

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