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This Article is sponsored by the California Earthquake Authority. Learn more about the CEA and how to reduce earthquake loss at Earthquakeauthority.com.

With 2,000 known fault lines crisscrossing the state, Californians live under the constant threat of earthquakes. And yet many residents aren't prepared for these inevitable natural disasters.

That's why the California Earthquake Authority (CEA) and the American Red Cross (ARC) have aligned resources to help more people prepare to survive and recover from California's next damaging earthquake. By combining ARC's expertise on preparing a kit, making a family disaster plan and being informed with CEA's strength and experience on residential insurance and mitigation, the joint forces are your greatest resource for earthquake preparedness.

Let's review a few simple steps you can take to ensure your family stays safe the next time fault lines shift and disaster strikes.

Get a kit:
Keep basic supplies in an easy-to-carry emergency preparedness kit that you can use at home or take with you in case you must evacuate.

Make a plan:
Identify out-of-area emergency contacts. Decide where to reunite with loved ones after a disaster in case phone lines are down. Write your plan on an emergency contact card and store in your phone along with important numbers for emergency resources in your area.

Be informed: Discuss how to prepare and safely respond to emergencies that are most likely to happen where you live, work and play. Learn how notification systems in your area will work.

Minimize Financial Hardship: Secure your home's structure and content by anchoring its foundation, bolting things like water heaters and tall furniture and bracing overhead light fixtures. Organize and store important documents. And, finally, consider earthquake insurance -- without earthquake insurance to help cover the costs of repairs and other expenses that come with catastrophic damage, you will pay out-of-pocket to fix your home, to replace your personal property and to live and eat elsewhere.

For more safety tips you can share with your family, be sure to print out and read the Red Cross Ready Checklist and the Earthquake Safety Checklist. You can even download the Red Cross' Earthquake App, download coupons for select preparedness items and test your knowledge by taking the QuakeQuiz. Also: Don't forget to perfect your Drop, Cover and Hold On skills by watching this helpful video tutorial. You'll be glad you did the next time the ground starts shaking.

Earthquake insurance is more affordable than you may think. For premium estimates and more information, visit EarthquakeAuthority.com.

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