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Quakes push Californians to prepare for the next big jolt

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RIDGECREST, Calif. — Shaken residents are cleaning up from two of the biggest earthquakes to rattle California in decades as scientists warn that both should serve as a wake-up call to be ready when the long-dreaded “Big One” strikes.

California is spending more than $16 million to install thousands of quake-detecting sensors statewide that officials say will give utilities and trains precious seconds to shut down before the shaking starts.

Gov. Gavin Newsom said it’s time residents did their part by mapping out emergency escape routes and preparing earthquake kits with food, water, lights and other necessities.

A magnitude 6.4 earthquake Thursday and a magnitude 7.1 quake Friday were centered 11 miles (18 kilometers) from the small desert town of Ridgecrest, about 150 miles (241 kilometers) from Los Angeles.

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