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The Triangle of Life is an unsubstantiated theory about how to survive a major earthquake. In this article, we will debunk its effectiveness.
Disaster preparedness experts have disputed many of Copp’s findings, especially because they are based on earthquake experiences in other countries. The United States has building codes that are quite different from those in other countries.
The recommendation to “drop, cover, and hold on” is a U.S.-based recommendation based on the U.S. Building Codes and construction standards, and there has been much research that proves that “Drop, Cover and Hold On!” has saved many people’s lives in the United States. In other countries, buildings are more likely to collapse or “pancake” but in the U.S., engineering researchers have demonstrated that this will rarely happen. Copp says that he used an earthquake simulation in Turkey, but further investigations into this statement show that the “simulation” was actually a voluntary organization's search and rescue exercise. Instead of using a real earthquake simulation to shake the building laterally, they rammed the building’s columns, causing the building to pancake.
There have been many articles published about Doug Copp, debunking his rescue-guru persona.
To read more about this Triangle of Life story, visit Snopes.
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