Depending upon where one is positioned, the force of the plate movements during the pole shift may be grinding, sliding, or forcing the plate under or over another. If grinding occurs, then the earthquake will be felt as jiggling. If sliding occurs, the earthquake will be felt as having the floor jerked out from under one. If forcing under occurs, then the earthquake will be felt as a sudden jolt, then jiggling followed by an inundation by water if the sea level is being reduced. If forcing over occurs, then the earthquake will be felt by a sudden jolt that may throw one up into the air, just as mountains may be wrenched upward with such force that sheer rock is ripped apart during mountain building, producing cliffs.
Individuals standing may be dashed during such times, and are safest if grounded in some way such that their movement is limited. If grinding or sliding is to occur, lying on the ground will minimize being thrown. If the plate is being forced up, then lying under a firm cover will prevent any more than a bruise as one it thrown against the ceiling. If survivors are practical about their housing during these first few weeks of Aftertime living, there will in truth be no disruption of living, other than having to sit down now and then for a moment or two. Leave the crockery in the boxes, for the present! Do not build any housing you expect to be living in afterwards on a fault line, most certainly not on a fault line that will be experiencing mountain building. Built more toward the center of a plate.
A dome or other structure designed by its shape or materials to withstanding jolting will not only survive, it will protect the inhabitants. Any jolt the structure experiences will be passed on to the inhabitants, who should expect to be tossed about the room and plan accordingly. Have no objects that can be thrown lose in the room, but tie them all down. Lie down on the floor, buttressed by padded objects such as mattresses against walls or sofas, so that any flung body has only a short way to go before being stopped. The worst case situation one should prepare for is an impact after being dashed equivalent to a drop of 500 feet. This presumes no protections around the object or person to prevent impact injury, and that the object or person is not prevented from being thrown.