3 Uses of a Mattress in an Earthquake

Earthquakes are one of the biggest fears of our modern society; it is the type of natural disaster that can affect millions, and we are not even close to being able to predict such an event. The best way to deal with it is to be well-prepared for when it happens, especially if you live in a region where earthquakes are known to occur. Feeling the earth shaking beneath your feet is a scary sensation, and I admit it is not easy to keep calm under such pressure. Each person has a different response to it, but being aware of the small gestures that can save your life is essential – in fact, I believe it is mandatory for each one of us.

These terrible natural events can happen during night time, and this means there’s a high chance of catching us off guard while sleeping. A Chinese inventor has designed a possible solution for such circumstances, called the “earthquake-proof bed.” Although presented as a revolutionary life-saving concept, the mechanism was considered even scarier than the earthquake itself. That is because it was designed to drop the sleeping person, along with the mattress they’re sleeping on, into the bed’s frame which then gets covered by a hard top that seals the box, to offer protection against debris.


The mechanism relies on sensors embedded into the bed, which can feel the ground shaking. When they do, the mattress drops into the frame, which is designed to also host supplies (food, water, medical stuff, maybe even oxygen canisters). Web users didn’t react with enthusiasm to the invention mainly because of the safety concerns and a few too many unanswered questions about the technical specifications, like the way one could get out of the entrapping bed. So it appears that the earthquake-proof bed won’t be mass produced and I can’t say I’m sorry about this since I would feel completely horrified being stuck in a sealed chamber resembling a tomb. During an earthquake!

Until a better idea comes along, let’s focus on what we can do with what we have and know right now in the event of an earthquake that catches us in bed. If you’re sleeping or just napping when you feel that everything starts to shake, just stay in bed and use the frame to hold on and a pillow to cover your head and neck. You are less exposed to being injured if you stay where you are and not try to roll on the floor or get near the walls. There are a lot of studies showing that injuries and deaths in earthquakes are most often caused by falling or flying objects – lamps, TVs, broken glass, bookcases, etc., and not by collapsing buildings. The mattress you’re sleeping on may be a valuable ally in such circumstances. Here’s how you can put it to good use:

  • Grab it and hold on to it of your bed doesn’t have a solid frame. Lie on it face down, to protect your vital organs. Even if you fall, you’ll land on the mattress. So don’t let go of it until you feel it’s safe to get up and walk.
  • Use it as a shield. If there’s the danger of falling objects over you, lift one end of the mattress and hold it as a protection over your head or just in front of you. Since most mattresses nowadays have multiple layers, they will act as a buffer, absorbing the force with which the flying objects may hit.
  • Make a bandage. If you get injured, and you have nothing else around you to stop the bleeding, tear the cover of the mattress. Use it to improvise an emergency dressing until you get help. If there’s smoke from a fire caused by the earthquake, you can use the cover of the mattress to protect your mouth and nose and filter the air you breathe.

Knowing how to survive the first 72 hours after disaster will be critical

mattress on earthquake

There have been debates on the web about what type of mattress will behave better during an earthquake. It’s difficult to give a verdict because pretty much all modern mattresses have various features, but it’s not like they are specifically designed for natural disasters. Thus, considering the variety of opinions I’ve analyzed lately, I would have to agree with those acknowledging the memory foam products as being probably the safest choice in such circumstances. The coil spring items are too bouncy; the airbeds and waterbeds vibrate too much. The memory foam mattresses are built to absorb energy and to protect against impact; these features do come in handy when there’s an earthquake. But if you think of equipping your house with such mattresses for the entire family, beware the fact that they are not suitable for young children, as trymattress points out in its reviews.

The one thing you can do is to get prepared for hard-to-endure scenarios and train your family on how to handle the severe circumstances of an earthquake. Stay informed, get supplies, update your survival kit and remember that times of tragedy and necessity make people find an immense inner strength and do amazing things.

Guest post by Edie

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