I don't believe in creating great fear about natural disasters like earthquakes. They happen and you can't prevent them. But you can be prepared, assuming you are aware of the hazards. What concerns me is that it appears that many on the West Coast are not clear that the greatest earthquake hazard is not a Haiti-like quake in the middle of LA or the Bay Area, but a Chile-like quake creating damage from Northern California to British Columbia. Unfortunately, many are not aware of this, but from the AP via Yahoo: The Cascadia Region Earthquake Workgroup (CREW) has a website and in 2005 prepared a report Cascadia Subduction Zone Earthquakes: A magnitude 9.0 earthquake scenario (PDF) that anyone who lives within 300 miles of the area from the Brooks Peninsula on Vancouver Island to Cape Mendocino should be aware of. On CREW's site they have links to various sites including a piece on the NY Times website Chilean Quake a Warning to U.S. Northwest that discusses risks in public buildings like schools in Oregon and a piece in USA Today Chilean earthquake hints at dangers of 'Big One' for USA which includes: As someone who lives where, off the coast, the Cascadia subduction zone meets the San Andreas Fault and as someone who has been responsible for emergency planning, I am acutely aware of the scenario described in the CREW 2007 tabletop exercise as follows: The quake in Haiti was heart-wrenching because of the fact of poverty and inadequate government. But Americans need to pay more attention to the situation in Chile as a learning opportunity.