What Does A Major Earthquake Feel Like? (VIDEO)

By Corinne Rose

May 16, 2013 Updated May 16, 2013 at 6:33 PM EDT

FORT WAYNE, Ind. (www.incnow.tv) -- When you think of earthquakes zones, Indiana probably doesn't top your list. But the Hoosier state is prone to earthquakes, even strong ones.

Homestead High School students participate in an annual earthquake drill, but now know what one actually feels like, up to a 7.0 magnitude.

"When you get to, like, they said it was a 5, it was, like, really kind of shaky and that. Then once you got to the 7 or 8 or whatever they called it, it was, like, it was really hard to try and hold onto your seat," says Homestead senior Michelle Bonahoom.

This earthquake simulator from the Bloomington-based Indiana Geological Survey and the state Homeland Security Department tours the state, educating students, emergency management and business employees, and the public about the very real dangers Hoosiers face from fault zones in Illinois and Ohio.

"Most people get hurt by Midwestern earthquakes by simple things like falling bookshelves, debris coming out of cabinets, pictures, mirrors falling from the wall. If our structures are built to code, they will not collapse. So the safest thing is to drop, cover and hold on," says Walter Gray from the Indiana Geological Survey.

Since 1817, Indiana has had 43 earthquakes above a magnitude 3.0 -- one about every four and a half years.

In April of 2008, northeast Indiana residents felt a 5.2 magnitude earthquake centered in Mount Carmel, Illinois.

It's something these students say they hope they don't go through for real.

"It was definitely scary, like, to think of myself in that kind of situation. It was definitely a little bit scary. I can't imagine being actually in that situation," says Homestead sophomore Megan Butler.

At least now they know how to handle one when it hits.

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