EAGLE ROCK (CBSLA.com) — Students in Mr. DeLeon’s advanced physical science class know exactly what the alarm means.
It’s an early earthquake warning system. Eagle Rock High school is notified through the USGS shake alert system.
“Duck, cover, hold and be alert,” a student said.
The class sees exactly what can be done in less than eight seconds to prepare for an earthquake.
“Eight seconds might not seem like a long time. … It mean life or death,” a student said.
An early warning system in Mexico gave some people up to a minute to prepare for the 8.1 magnitude quake last week.
“It was a little reality check. It was kinda scary. We’re going to have to be doing that eventually,” student Alyssa Montijo said.
Eagle Rock High School was the first school in the state and the only LAUSD school to get the early warning pilot program two years ago. They started the system in 10 science classes now it’s in 18. The principal is also connected to the system and can make an announcement over the loudspeaker.
“If there’s the best technology out there to provide a safer world, I’d like to be at the forefront of it,” Principal Mylene Keipp said.
It’s still not clear if the USGS will get the necessary funding to install a statewide early warning system for California , Oregon and Washington. Scientists need more than $16 million a year to complete and maintain it.
It’s not just about the warning. They’ve also used it as a way of teaching their students about earthquakes.
“We’re also giving them the science behind it and how it starts from the epicenter and we have so many seconds. It doesn’t detect it, it tells us an earthquake is happening,” DeLeon said.