Without hesitation students rose from their seats, dropped to the floor, took cover under their desks and held tight until they were given instructions to evacuate.
The 310 students started filing out of their classrooms and into the designated safe area behind the school.
The school took part in the Great Washington Shakeout joined by over 860,000 statewide participants and 24.5 million worldwide. The Shakeout exercised individuals, schools, cities, states and nations in earthquake preparedness.
With students all lined up in the designated safe area, away from power lines and at a distance from the building, teachers counted heads, as Chauncey Davis Principal Kresta Byington was all smiles acknowledging a successful drill.
“Not knowing when an earthquake might strike it is our job to make sure the students and facility know exactly what to do. Safety is the key, safety and making sure the students know what to do in any evacuation situation,” said Byington.
With the passing of Senate Bill 5620 this past July, schools are now tasked to conduct several drills throughout the year.
“We do high-risk event drills, lockdowns, shelter in place and fire drills. Each is a little different, and all are important,” said Byington.
Pacific County communities near water have a few extra drills that those inland communities may not have. The threat of an earthquake triggering a possible tsunami causing flooding in the area, makes the high-risk event drills even more important.
“It is our goal that the students will know what to do in situations if they find themselves alone when a natural disaster strikes,” said Byington.