The countdown to Canada's largest earthquake drill is on!

VANCOUVER- You are invited to join thousands of British Columbians as they "drop, cover and hold on" for the 2013 Great British Columbia ShakeOut. The BC Earthquake Alliance and Insurance Bureau of Canada (IBC) are pleased to present Canada's largest earthquake drill this year on Thursday, October 17, at 10:17 a.m.

The province of British Columbia has officially proclaimed October 17 ShakeOut BC Day. Participating in the Great BC ShakeOut and practising the life-saving drill of "drop, cover and hold on" is an important step for you and your family to help you respond more quickly and effectively when an actual earthquake occurs. You can register for the BC ShakeOut at

"Hundreds of thousands of people up and down North America's earthquake-prone west coast have already registered to participate. The ShakeOut drill is also a great time to review and update your emergency plans and supplies, so you can further minimize damage and injuries when an earthquake hits" says Teron Moore, Co-chair of the Great BC ShakeOut Organizing Committee.

"Earthquakes can strike anywhere at any time. Although we cannot predict when the next big one will hit, we can prepare" says Bill Adams, IBC Vice-President, Western & Pacific. "You can practise protecting yourself from an earthquake by annually participating in the BC ShakeOut drill, having an emergency plan and kit at the ready to protect your family for at least 72 hours."

IBC and the insurance industry are leaders in preparing Canada for an earthquake. IBC's partnership with the Great BC ShakeOut is an important step toward raising awareness about the importance of earthquake preparedness. IBC has also commissioned research on how a major earthquake would affect Canada's western and eastern seismic zones. The study is expected to be released later this fall.

To find out why you should participate, check out this video: