John's Vashon Preparedness Blog

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Author: Created: 6/15/2010 5:35 PM RssIcon
Disaster news and links of interest for Vashonites
By John Cornelison on 2/24/2011 9:12 AM

The recent 6.3 magnitude earthquake in Christchurch, New Zealand, killed many more people and caused far more damage than the September 2010 7.1 magnitude earthquake which struck the same area; the reason: even though this earthquake was weaker than last year's event, it was much shallower; was situated directly under Christchurch; hit during the lunch hour when more people were exposed to damage; and shook sediments that were prone to "liquefaction," which can magnify the damage done by the ground shaking; scientists say the same description nicely fits many major cities and towns in Washington, Oregon, California, and British Columbia.

- See the full post at: www.homelandsecuritynewswire.com/nz-earthquake-illustrates-risks-us-west-coast

By John Cornelison on 2/16/2011 1:26 PM
image Yes, 2012! More is to come, and you can consult Chief Lipe or Exercise Czar Rick Wallace for all the details, but for now please just add the following dates to next year’s calendar:

2012 Exercise Series Functional Exercise: June 5-6 Logistics Drill: June 12-14 Recovery TTX: August 15 & 22 Overview Evergreen Quake is a series of three exercises that is intended to test the ability of local, state, federal and tribal governments, as well as select private sector entities located within the eight-county...
By John Cornelison on 2/11/2011 7:24 AM
Although this is dated (from July 26, 2010), it is unlikely these dates will change as they have generally been used for some years. It also helps us realize how to take part most effectively in planning (and funding!) efforts for the county. It comes from Jennifer Schaal, UASI Program Manager, Washington State Emergency Management Division.

Additional information on state level grants (i.e., primarily for counties I suspect, but perhaps open to Vashon directly) can be found at: www.emd.wa.gov/grants/grants_index.shtml

January FY11 Write IJs and obtain stakeholder reviews (EMD w/optional input)     February FY11 IJs continue...     March IJs continue...   FY11 Core Group approves final project list ...
By John Cornelison on 2/10/2011 11:50 AM
The Pacific Northwest is exploring solutions that can provide officials an overview of a regional event.

The existing situation is very fragmented:

WA State is currently using ESI’s WebEOC (for which Vashon has an account) & ESiWebFUSION but this has an older architecture & cumbersome user interface and doesn’t readily allow integration with other technologies in use elsewhere.

The state has a wrapper or GIS based viewer for WebEOC, known as the Washington Information Sharing Environment (WISE) that also aggregates additional data (including from the military, as it was developed by the National Guard)

I’m not aware of what FEMA or DHS uses, but I suspect it is something else.

Neighboring states use WebEOC and other custom solutions. (Oregon is adopting – with some trouble- a more regional system: Virtual Emergency Network of Multnomah, for instance.)

King County has an independent...
By John Cornelison on 2/9/2011 10:25 AM
At the 2/8 refresher, Rick & Deb Brown of VIFR kindly came with their daughter and helped local Vashon CERT members practice first aid and bandaging techniques on each other – including participant Rex Stratton. Here are a few photos (click on them to open larger pictures):

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By John Cornelison on 2/8/2011 7:27 PM
Bellevue’s MRP Engineering has a new engineering bulletin entitled Chile Recovers From 2010 M8.8 Earthquake that looks at progress made since their M8.8 earthquake February 27th, 2010. It concludes with these implications:

Chile is making headway in rebuilding its heartland following a massive subduction zone earthquake that affected modern structures as far away as Santiago (335 km from the epicenter). However, the recovery from a major earthquake need not be a lengthy process. Organizations with earthquake exposures can learn from this event and should consider proactive steps to enhance safety, reduce damage, and minimize downtime. • Review business recovery plans to include dedicated resources (contactors, suppliers, and engineers). • For existing operations, assess earthquake risks (buildings, contents, and critical lifelines) and identify specific areas of improvement relative to safety and business risks. • For proposed construction, perform independent design reviews to verify...
By John Cornelison on 2/7/2011 10:21 AM




This is likely the last year that VMIRC will build and sell J-Poles to local hams so get them while you can! Here are some pics of the group assembling in Meadow Creature’s facility.

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By John Cornelison on 1/31/2011 12:39 PM

vifr.org (Small) Congrats to VIFR and especially Chris Coley and Chief Lipe and others who put a lot of work replacing the functionality of www.VIFR.org with a new portal based website from Firehouse Solutions. Check VIFR’s new web site which has a history, photos of all the island’s equipment, lots of background on the fire district, and more information for volunteers and the public. There is a private side to the web site also that security offers much additional functionality to staff and volunteers.

By John Cornelison on 1/31/2011 11:33 AM

wstrohl_RSS_Grunge_Green_125x126 A new web site started yesterday and is already making many waves by attempting to be the ultimate portal for discussing Social Media’s impact for Emergency Management. Looks like an interesting source of best practices and ideas as we start crafting our own Vashon specific Social Media strategy/plan…

Check it out at: www.sm4em.org!

By John Cornelison on 1/15/2011 8:39 AM
23-27 January Washington State Convention Center

12:00–4:00 p.m Free of Charge and Open to All! weatherfestsmalllogo Teachers, students, families!  Mark your calendar for the American Meteorological Society’s 10th Annual WeatherFest, a cool, super-size science fair to teach you all about the weather, climate and related fields.

What is WeatherFest? WeatherFest is an interactive science and weather fair designed to instill a love for math and science in children of all ages and to spark a young person’s interest in this area so they may consider...
By John Cornelison on 1/14/2011 9:38 AM
5W14FLOODINGCalifornia has more risk of catastrophic storms than any other region in the country – even the Southern hurricane states, according to a new study released Thursday.

The two-year study by the U.S. Geological Survey is the most thorough effort yet to assess the potential effects of a "worst-case" storm in California.

It builds on a new understanding of so-called atmospheric rivers, a focusing of high-powered winds that drag a fire hose of tropical moisture across the Pacific Ocean, pointed directly at California for days on end. The state got a relatively tame taste of the phenomenon in December.

The team of experts that developed the scenario can't say when it will happen. But they do say it has happened in the past and is virtually certain to strike again.

...
By John Cornelison on 1/13/2011 10:02 AM

The declaration (noted at www.seattlepi.com/local/433304_emergency12.html) would presumably make affected homeowners and businesses eligible for low cost loans and other assistance.

Does anyone on Vashon know this process and how to best support locals seeking such assistance for this or any future disaster? If so, please contact me as I’m curious about this process.

By John Cornelison on 1/6/2011 6:07 PM
$ www.safecomprogram.gov/NR/rdonlyres/132003E7-6C43-4E15-97D6-A2A4E5A2704F/0/GrantProgramsforSAFECOMWebsite.pdf has a huge list of grant programs – many of which we are eligible to apply for. Indeed if you see a critical need (and can properly justify it!) for funds for a key program, I suspect we can likely find funds for it…

This overview was mentioned in today’s release of the Fiscal Year 2011 SAFECOM Guidance on Emergency Communications Grants (www.safecomprogram.gov) for use...
By John Cornelison on 1/5/2011 5:28 PM
enableUS & The Community Emergency Preparedness Information Network Present:

The 2011 enABLED in Emergencies Conference March 2-3, 2011 • Tacoma, WA ________________________________________ "If you are waiting for a situation to develop, you are going to lose your ability to change the outcome." Craig Fugate, FEMA Administrator

About This Conference This day and a half conference is hosted by enableUS and the Community Emergency Preparedness Information Network (CEPIN) and will examine some of the greatest challenges that emergency management, disability, public health and human services communities face when responding to disasters and emergencies.  This interactive and engaging seminar will focus on new FEMA sheltering guidelines, emergency evacuations for disability communities, jurisdictional liability issues and building collaborative community partnerships.  Regional issues such as ice storms, flooding and earthquakes will be discussed as well as the effectiveness of special needs registries,...
By John Cornelison on 1/5/2011 5:25 PM
Portland was the forum for the latest long range weather forecast, earlier this week. Many gruesome details are at:

http://www.cpc.noaa.gov/products/analysis_monitoring/lanina/enso_evolution-status-fcsts-web.pdf

but the summary is simply:

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Click image above for a full-size version

And

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By John Cornelison on 1/4/2011 5:48 PM
http://www.cattlenetwork.com/Report--We-re-Not-Ready-For-Bioterrorism/2010-12-28/Article.aspx?oid=1294626&fid= has the following of some interest:

If a major disease incident or bioterrorism attack were to occur today, the United States would not be read for it. That’s according to a new report supported by a grant from the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation. In fact, the report says “there’s an emergency for emergency health preparedness in the United States.” It calls attention to significant local, state and federal budget cuts and the impact they have had on public health departments’ ability to maintain staff capabilities, and their ability to respond to crises. Key findings include: * 21 states were not able to rapidly identify disease-causing E.coli O157:H7 and submit the lab results...
By John Cornelison on 12/23/2010 1:52 PM
Sample map output from the Twitter Earthquake Detector prototype project.

U.S. Geological Survey: Twitter Earthquake Detector (TED) reports that “the USGS is developing a system that gathers real-time, earthquake-related messages from the social networking site Twitter and applies place, time, and key word filtering to gather geo-located accounts of shaking. This approach provides rapid first-impression narratives and, potentially, photos from people at the hazard’s location.” http://fcw.com/articles/2010/07/19/web-app-usgs-twitter.aspx indicates that the USGS will supplement their official data with photographs and...
By John Cornelison on 12/15/2010 11:41 AM

The Sound Shake 2010 Incident Log entries have been removed from the Incident Log so they won’t get confused with whatever new records might eventually get put in next. An Excel file of these is available for download by EOC members from the document repository (under Planning | Msg Ctr | Incident Specific Docs). Note that the spreadsheet includes lots of additional columns and hasn't yet been formatted nicely, but all the data is there.

By John Cornelison on 12/15/2010 10:25 AM
 

 





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By John Cornelison on 12/7/2010 5:22 PM
FEMA offers a great set of coursework you can take over the Internet. Now they’ve announced some new courses: The Emergency Management Institute (EMI) offers self-paced courses designed for people who have emergency management responsibilities and the general public. All are offered free-of-charge to those who qualify for enrollment. To get a complete listing of courses, click on Course List link above.

FEMA’s Independent Study Program offers courses that support the nine mission areas identified by the National Preparedness Goal.

Incident Management

Operational Planning

Disaster Logistics

Emergency Communications

Service to Disaster Victims

Continuity Programs

Public Disaster Communications

Integrated Preparedness

Hazard Mitigation

New Courses Launched IS-18.11 - FEMA EEO Employee Course 2011...
By John Cornelison on 10/25/2010 5:10 PM
This is (nearly) the title of the latest USGS fact sheet #3023 summarizing what could happen if a 7.1 earthquake happened along the Tacoma Fault Zone, as recently modeled by scientists.



"The U.S. Geological Survey and cooperating scientists have recently assessed the effects of a magnitude 7.1 earthquake on the Tacoma Fault Zone in Pierce County, Washington. A quake of comparable magnitude struck the southern Puget Sound region about 1,100 years ago, and similar earthquakes are almost certain to occur in the future. The region is now home to hundreds of thousands of people, who would be at risk from the shaking, liquefaction, landsliding, and tsunamis caused by such an earthquake. The modeled effects of this scenario earthquake will help emergency planners and residents of the region prepare for future quakes." - Report’s...
By John Cornelison on 10/5/2010 8:42 PM
Forward, from an email to SKCOAD partners:

I wanted to pass along a free training opportunity that we received notice about from the Snohomish COAD.  “Hands on Diversity” is a series of cultural workshops being offered at the Everett Performing Arts Center, 2710 Wetmore Avenue in downtown Everett and are open to the public:

 

Saturday, Oct. 9: Native American culture:  9 a.m. to noon & Latin American culture:  1 to 4 p.m. Saturday, October 16: Asian Pacific culture:  9 a.m. to noon & African American culture:  1 to 4 p.m.

To register, please contact Therese Quinn or register ONLINE http://everettwa.org/CityNews.aspx?ID=1&nID=928

Therese Quinn-Burke Snohomish County Medical Reserve Corps Coordinator 3509 - 109th Street SW Everett, WA   98204 (office) 425-388-5075 therese.quinn@snoco.org tquinn@shd.snohomish.wa.gov

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By John Cornelison on 9/26/2010 7:51 AM
5016559065_d11248d61e_s The WA State Emergency Managers Association annual conference was held this last week and some of the materials from that are now available online for any of us who were unable to make the conference.

Presentation slides and photos from the conference are available at the WSEMA website at www.wsema.org .  See "2010 Conference Presentations" on the left side menu.

The videos embedded in Claire Bonilla's Microsoft presentation were too large to load onto the WSEMA website. For more information,...
By John Cornelison on 9/18/2010 8:33 PM

fig.pug_flts If you’ve not seen it, there is a good map of local faults, with a brief write-up at www.pnsn.org/INFO_GENERAL/puget_faults.html

Click on the image for a larger view.

By John Cornelison on 9/12/2010 8:52 AM
This winter's extra snowfall predictionCliff Mass’ long-term forecast points to a cold and wet winter ahead

“There is a strong correlation between the temperature of the tropical Pacific and the general character of our weather”

The fall is forecast to be significantly wetter than normal and the winter somewhat so. Fall temperatures are predicted to be normal, but the winter should be cooler than normal.

While the mountains will have the heaviest snows, more than average is forecast for our lowlands too.

- http://cliffmass.blogspot.com/2010/09/long-term-forecast.html

Deals on ski area passes have another week or two to run, so don’t delay!

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By John Cornelison on 9/11/2010 11:24 AM

If you want to disaster proof yourself, consider putting your critical (but non-private) files on a server. Unless you are the trusting type, use this as a backup – or keep a backup on a hard drive that you control. I’ve used www.DropBox.com, but here is a listing of many more options:

www.webdesignbooth.com/file-hosting-websites-for-you-to-upload-and-share-files-with-your-friends

By John Cornelison on 9/11/2010 4:00 AM
Historically Vashon has had a few major wildfires:

BoulderCO-4MileCanyonFromPlains 1893: in August 1893 a fire began in the logged off area near the present high school where the first saw mill was located.  The fire rages for two days and nights, "nearly a hundred" volunteers "fought desperately against apparently hopeless odds, with shovels and hoes and rakes, to save the new Baptist Church and the Presbyterian Church at Center, and the Fuller store across the street.  With the flames within two hundred yards of Center, the wind shifted to the north on the evening of the second day, allowing fire fighters finally gain control of the fire.

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By John Cornelison on 9/10/2010 12:56 PM
Patrick Cullis- BoulderCO-4MileCanyon-FromFlagstaffRoadLookout My sister/brother-in-law live in Boulder, CO (to the west of Broadway), and here are a couple news releases detailing what to do in a fire situation that they received yesterday afternoon. Can you imagine what our PI Team would have to write up as a notice in a rush, if we had a wildfire here on Vashon some August afternoon?

BoulderCO-4MileCanyon-BrendaCabell-6Sep10-1130NearSugarloaf...
By John Cornelison on 9/9/2010 5:25 PM

"Prepare Because You Care"
Are you ready ..... for the unthinkable?

September 11th, 10 am - 3 pm
Chapel Hill Church
7700 Skansie Avenue
Gig Harbor, 98335

Neighbors are having info on home earthquake retrofit, anatomy of a disaster response, Dutch oven cooking, fire extinguisher operation, sheltering, food and water management, emergency supplies you can make at home, Rotary Shelter Boxes, Neighborhood emergency teams, and more.

Cathy Rogers has their brochure; they have 53 sponsors listed, including schools, CenturyLink, radio club, FEMA, PEP-C (Peninsula Emergency Preparedness Committee, grocery stores, churches, military, etc.) and you may be able to catch a ride with her.

More info at www.chapelhillpc.com

By John Cornelison on 9/9/2010 5:37 AM
National Preparedness Month is a nationwide effort held each September. The goal of National Preparedness Month is to increase public awareness about the importance of preparing for emergencies, including natural disasters and potential terrorist attacks, at home, work and school. Events and activities across the nation encourage individuals to get an emergency supply kit, make a family emergency plan, and get involved in preparing their communities. National Preparedness Month is sponsored by the Department of Homeland Security's (DHS) Ready Campaign.

For information on local National Preparedness Month events, please view the Ready Campaign's website.

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