Local officials, emergency responders, health-care providers and geologists will gather at a series of events Thursday to mark the 25th anniversary of the devastating 1994 Northridge earthquake.
The quake struck at 4:31 a.m. Jan. 17, 1994, with a magnitude of 6.7. The temblor resulted in 57 deaths, left more than 5,000 injured and caused more than $20 billion in property damage.
Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti and Sen. Bob Hertzberg, D-Van Nuys, will be among the dignitaries gathering at Cal State Northridge at 2 p.m. for a discussion on the lessons learned in the aftermath of the quake. Participants will also discuss state and local efforts to improve earthquake preparedness.
CSUN President Dianne Harrison is scheduled to take part in the discussion, along with City Councilman Bob Blumenfield, geologist and earthquake expert Lucy Jones and Glenn Pomeroy, CEO of the California Earthquake Authority. The discussion will be live-streamed online, including at www.youtube.com/user/CASenDems.
“Many of the hardest-hit areas became known as `ghost towns’ when residents abandoned entire neighborhoods because building owners could not afford the cost to rebuild,” Pomeroy said in a statement earlier this month. “We need to double down on our commitment to earthquake resilience to ensure the ghost towns never return.”
According to the earthquake authority, only about 13 percent of Californians who have residential insurance also have earthquake insurance.
Blumenfield is scheduled to take part in a separate commemoration event earlier in the day at his district office in Reseda. According to his office, the councilman and residents will reflect on the impact of the quake and the importance of being prepared for a major disaster. Los Angeles Fire Department search-and-rescue equipment will be on display at the event.
Members of the city’s Community Emergency Response Teams will also attend.
On Thursday night, during a performance at the Grammy Museum in downtown Los Angeles, R&B singer Thelma Houston will be presented with a replacement Grammy Award, because the one she received for her song “Don’t Leave Me This Way” was broken during the Northridge quake.
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