Bay Area Remembers the Loma Prieta Earthquake

The upper deck of the Cypress viaduct in Oakland collapsed onto the lower deck during the 1989 earthquake. (Joe Lewis/Wikimedia)
The upper deck of the Cypress viaduct in Oakland collapsed onto the lower deck during the 1989 earthquake. (Joe Lewis/Wikimedia Commons)

Anyone who was in the Bay Area at 5:04 p.m. on October 17, 1989 has a story to tell about the Loma Prieta earthquake. They are stories of sorrow and survival, humor and courage.

Loma Prieta was the largest earthquake on the San Andreas fault since 1906. The 6.9 magnitude quake killed 63 people, injured more than 3,000 others and caused 6 billion dollars in property damage. It ruptured the Bay Bridge, the Embarcadero Freeway in San Francisco and the Nimitz Freeway in Oakland. It halted the World Series between the San Francisco Giants and the Oakland A's for a record 10 days.

To commemorate the 25th anniversary of the Loma Prieta earthquake, Bay Area residents can run earthquake drills, share stories and honor the lives of neighbors and loved ones at many events around the bay. And resource fairs will offer kid-friendly activities, plus information and demonstrations to help people prepare for major quakes in the future.

On Thursday, you can participate in the 7th Annual:

Great California ShakeOut
Thursday, October 16
10:16 a.m.

Sponsored

The statewide drill encourages workplaces, schools and households to practice how to "drop, cover and hold" during an earthquake. You can register and find more resources online.

First responders search for victims at a collapsed department store in the Pacific Garden Mall in Santa Cruz. (U.S. Geological Survey)
First responders search for victims at a collapsed department store in the Pacific Garden Mall in Santa Cruz after the '89 quake.  (C.E. Meyer/U.S. Geological Survey)

In Santa Cruz and Oakland, officials will honor people who lost their lives, and emergency workers who responded to the disaster. Santa Cruz merchants, past city officials and scientists from the U.S. Geological Survey and UC Santa Cruz will reflect on lessons learned from the tragedy and discuss how Santa Cruz is strengthening its resilience for future earthquakes.

25 Years Later: Santa Cruz after the Loma Prieta Earthquake
Friday, October 17
10 a.m. to 11 a.m.
Corner of Front Street and Pacific Avenue, Santa Cruz
Free

Oakland's event will honor the 42 people who died when the Cypress Viaduct collapsed, and the many emergency workers who worked on the front lines. A resource fair will help residents prepare for future emergencies with activities, interactive demonstrations, and free earthquake preparedness items for the first 100 attendees.

Reflect. Honor. Prepare: Bridging Generations & Communities through Preparedness
Friday, October 17
11:30 a.m. to 2:00 p.m.
Cypress Freeway Memorial Park
Mandela Parkway at 14th Street, Oakland
Free

In San Francisco, the outdoor plaza of the Exploratorium will transform into an interactive earthquake preparedness fair. Mayor Ed Lee along with other public officials and community members will share their stories of the 1989 quake. In the "TOP Chef - Taste of Preparedness Cook-off" teams will compete to create a tasty meal using non-perishable items from emergency kits.

Loma Prieta 25
Friday, October 17
12:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m.
The Exploratorium
Pier 15, 698 The Embarcadero, San Francisco
Free after 4 p.m.

And in Aptos, near the epicenter of the quake, families can get tips on preparing for wildfires and drought as well as earthquakes, and scientists will share the lessons of Loma Prieta.

Silver Anniversary Preparedness Fair and Lecture in Aptos
Saturday, October 18
9 a.m. to 1 p.m. (Fair)
7:00 p.m. to 9:00 p.m. (Lecture)
Cabrillo College
6500 Soquel Drive, Aptos
Quadrangle between 100 building and the original college theater (Fair)
Room 450, Forum Building, (Lecture)
The fair is free. The lecture is $22.

More events commemorating the 25th Anniversary of Loma Prieta can be found at:

Loma Prieta 25

Bay Area Earthquake Alliance

Sponsored

 

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