City of Pasadena Encourages Community To Prepare Now for Next Big Earthquake

PASADENA, Calif.—In an earthquake, collapsing buildings have the potential to kill people. That is why the City of Pasadena works hard to put preventive measures into place to protect residents and businesses.

In 2019, the Pasadena City Council passed an ordinance on soft-story buildings. Building codes are updated by the state every three years; however, with an aging building stock in a seismically active region, Pasadena understands that local ordinance updates may be necessary above and beyond state codes to address certain categories of potentially vulnerable buildings to protect lives.

Recently, Pasadena’s Central Library was identified as vulnerable to an earthquake and was closed pending seismic upgrades.

Identifying older structures like the library and retrofitting them using new construction guidelines and up-to-date engineering enables them to withstand a strong earthquake and will save lives.

While City staff continues to do everything they can to prepare for the next big earthquake, residents and businesses are also encouraged to have their own plan and supplies ready. It’s only a matter of time before another earthquake strikes, and planning ahead could literally save your life and the lives of those you love.

The City’s public information officer and emergency manager, Lisa Derderian, will be discussing how to prepare for and survive an earthquake Wednesday, Oct. 20, from 5-6 p.m via Zoom. Register now for this free event.

Community members are also encouraged to participate in the annual Great ShakeOut Earthquake Drill this Thursday, Oct. 21, to practice how to keep yourself and others safe during an earthquake. For more information and to register, visit

Stay connected to the City of Pasadena! Visit us online at; follow us on Twitter at @PasadenaGov, and Instagram and Facebook at @CityOfPasadena; or call the City Service Center Monday through Friday during business hours at (626) 744-7311.