California, other states prepare for earthquakes (Update)

October 18, 2012

(AP)—Millions of Americans got ready and rumbled in the "Great Shakeout" earthquake drill.

Participants from California and numerous other states and countries stopped what they were doing Thursday morning to practice ducking and taking cover. It was all part of preparation for a future earthquake.

In Los Angeles, Mayor Antonio Villaraigoza and other officials ducked under a table at downtown's Union Station. Subways and light-rail trains slowed for visual inspections—although they would actually stop in case of the Big One.

Organizers say some 14 million people, including 9.3 million in California, signed up to participate. Newcomers included people in Virginia, where a magnitude-5.8 hit last year.

Southern California held the first safety drill in 2008. The exercise has since spread around the world.

Explore further: Nation's quake-warning system needs work, scientists say

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