Residents Pay Tribute to 1906 Earthquake, Fire

At about 5:12 a.m. on April 18, 1906, the Great San Francisco Earthquake shook California for almost a minute causing lives to be lost and buildings to crumble, but 109 years later San Franciscans are continuing to pay tribute to the monumental quake and those who died in the subsequent fire.

According to the United States Geological Survey, the quake ranks as one of the most significant earthquakes of all time and provided scientists with important new knowledge about the San Andreas Fault.

Early tomorrow morning, members of the public are invited to take part in the remembrance celebrations at Lotta’s Fountain in the city’s Financial District, located at Market and Kearny streets.

A moment of silence is planned for 5:11 a.m. following sirens at 5:12 a.m.

From there, participants will head to the top of Dolores Park for a hydrant celebration at about 5:40 a.m., to pay tribute to a fire hydrant located at 20th and Church streets near Dolores Park, that helped the citizens battle the fires following the quake.

The hydrant will be spray painted gold, according to Lee Houskeeper, the publicist who is helping organize the celebrations.

In San Francisco Friday, two fire hydrants at Hayes and Buchanan streets were painted silver to honor their contributions to battling the fires after the quake, according to Houskeeper.

The silver twins, as the hydrants are called, were only recently discovered to have been in operation during the 1906 fires caused by the quake.

A luncheon in honor of the survivors of the quake was held in San Francisco Friday with city officials in attendance.

From 6 a.m. to 10 a.m. on today, the public is invited to celebrate at the annual Survivor Bloody Mary breakfast at Lefty O’Doul’s.

With April being Earthquake Awareness Month, fire departments across the Bay Area are encouraging Californians to have an emergency earthquake kit and practice emergency drills at home and at work to be prepared, should another earthquake comparable to the 1906 quake arrive.

Hannah Albarazi, Bay City News

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