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Quake experts say almost all of the thousands of deaths in Turkey’s earthquake could have been avoided if the country had been more prepared. The disaster brings back memories of the 1994 Northridge quake and has caused many locals to wonder how their homes or offices would fare in future quakes. So the San Fernando Valley Business Journal asks: What are you doing, if anything, to prepare for the next big earthquake? Michael Woods (PHOTO) Associate Vice President Grubb & Ellis Co. I don’t see the need to do anything. Turkey and those areas just really don’t have the controls relative to construction that we have, and I think that has set us up in a good position. The worst we saw (during the Northridge quake) was the freeway that came down. I would venture to say that (particular interchange near Santa Clarita) has been taken care of. Michael Molnar Vice President Marketing/Production Lee Enterprises Inc. On a personal note, I haven’t done anything for my house. Which is pretty stupid. Business-wise, being a Valley company located in Northridge during the last quake, we got hit pretty hard. We’ve done a lot to prevent (future) damage, like installing safety features on shelves and putting a lot of stuff on rollers so it can move around during a quake. We’re a machine shop making precision parts, so we have a lot of tools we need to protect. Susan Smyers Marketing Communications Manager Industrial Electronic Engineers Inc. On a personal level, I haven’t been doing anything. I guess maybe it’s because I’ve lived here all my life. I went through the Northridge quake, and I guess I don’t get too excited about it. One thing I do recall from Northridge is we didn’t have batteries for our flashlights or bottled water. Those are the two things I think of now, and I keep stocked up on them. Jack McGrath President GM Communications After the 1994 earthquake we got prepared for the next one. That was our wakeup call. We have gallons and gallons of water put away in every closet. We lost a lot of china last time, so we had our armoires bolted to studs in the walls. We put special fasteners on cabinets in the kitchen and we had a special gas turn-off valve put in. We have flashlights in every closet of the house. We’re as secure as we can be. Ramzi Shakra Marketing Manager VAS Group Inc. Company-wise we haven’t done much other than to engage in coffee-room chat, talking about how stable we think our office building is and how it would do in a quake. This is a steel structure, so we feel it’s safe. I guess people are reassured by that. Me personally, I’ve done nothing at all. The only thing I worry about is being in the right structure when the big one hits. If you’re not, there’s not much you can do about it.

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