PO Box 101 ~ 300 Memorial Drive, South Bend, WA 98586
(360) 875-9340 Office ~ (360) 875-9341 EOC ~ (360) 875-9342 Fax

Friday, December 10, 2010

Heavy Rain and Flood Watch

South Bend, Washington – The National Weather Service (NWS) in Portland issued a flood watch in effect from Saturday afternoon through Monday morning for portions of Northwest Oregon and Southwest Washington.

A moist storm system and warm front will bring heavy rain to much of Northwest Oregon and Southwest Washington on Saturday with additional periods of heavy rain on Sunday and Monday. The heaviest rain is likely to be in the North Oregon Coast Range, the Willapa Hills, and South Washington Cascades with 24-hour amounts as high as six inches. A break in rainfall is expected Sunday and then another front will bring additional rainfall from Sunday evening through Monday. Many rivers will rise sharply Saturday with flooding possibly as early as late Saturday afternoon.

While the Willapa and Naselle Rivers are not currently included in the rivers of most concern, the PCEMA office wants residents to be aware that the potential for flooding does exist.

Precautionary/Preparedness Actions:

A flood watch means there is a potential for flooding based on current forecasts. You should monitor later forecasts and be alert for possible flood warnings. Those living in areas prone to flooding should be prepared to take action should flooding develop.

For the most up to date weather information from the NWS please visit http://www.weather.gov/portland.  This page brings up all advisories, watches, and warnings for the southwest Washington area.

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

AHAB Siren in Ocean Park Inadvertently Activated

South Bend, Washington – This morning around 8:40 a.m. the All Hazard Alert Broadcast (AHAB) siren located near 216th and V Lane in Ocean Park was inadvertently activated. A technician working onsite accidentally activated the siren causing it to sound the actual warning tone for about two seconds. There is no cause for alarm – no event is taking place.

The AHAB outdoor warning system will be tested as scheduled on Monday, December 6, 2010 at noon.

Citizens with questions or concerns should contact the Pacific County Emergency Management office at (360) 642-9340 or (360) 875-9340.

Monday, November 29, 2010

High Wind Warning Issued

South Bend, Washington – The National Weather Service (NWS) in Portland has issued a high wind warning which is in effect from 10:00 p.m. this evening to 1:00 p.m. Tuesday for the south Washington and north Oregon coast.

Sustained south winds 30 to 40 mph with gusts 60 to 65 are likely on the beaches and headlands. Southerly winds 25 to 35 mph with gusts 50 to 60 mph are projected in the coastal communities. Winds will increase around midnight with the strongest winds from about 3:00 a.m. to 9:00 a.m. Tuesday. Winds will relax considerably behind the front after 10:00 a.m. Tuesday.

Precautionary/Preparedness Actions:

A high wind warning means a hazardous high wind event is expected or occurring. Sustained wind speeds of at least 40 mph or gusts of 58 mph or more can lead to property damage.

Be prepared for power outages. Secure light weight items that are located outdoors. Use caution if driving motor homes or other high profile vehicles.

For the most up to date weather information from the NWS please visit http://www.weather.gov/portland. This page brings up all advisories, watches, and warnings for the southwest Washington area.

Monday, November 8, 2010

American Red Cross Reserve Corps Training

The American Red Cross Southwest Washington is offering Reserve Corps training in Pacific County on Saturday, December 4, 2010. The training will be from 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. at the PUD in Long Beach (8610 Sandridge Road).

Space is limited to 30 attendees. Please RSVP no later than November 23rd to Michael Clark at 503-757-7549 or email masscare@swwashington.redcross.org.

Tentative Agenda:

9:00 a.m. - 9:30 a.m. – Registration/Objectives/Introductions
9:30 a.m. - 12:30 p.m. – Disaster Overveiw
12:30 p.m. - 1:30 p.m. – Orientation/Lunch
1:30 p.m. - 4:30 p.m. – Shelter Operations
4:30 p.m. – 5:00 p.m. – Questions/Dismissal

Wednesday, November 3, 2010

Tsunami Safe Haven Project to Present Open House for Long Beach Peninsula Residents

South Bend, Washington – The Tsunami Safe Haven project team (University of Washington, Pacific County Emergency Management Agency, and the Washington State Emergency Management Division) will be holding a conclusion meeting regarding vertical evacuation for the Long Beach Peninsula area on Thursday, November 18, 2010 at 5:30 p.m. at the Peninsula Church Center meeting room, 5000 N Place, in Seaview.

Please consider attending this meeting as it is an excellent opportunity to view and hear the outcome of previous meetings held between February and June 2010 regarding vertical evacuation possibilities for Long Beach, Ocean Park, and Ilwaco/Seaview areas. The results will be presented in an open house style with various thematic stations looking at the following topics: community meeting results, tsunami hazard information, vertical evacuation information, vertical evacuation structure design elements, cost estimates, and walking and evacuation routes.

This meeting will also illustrate where potential vertical evacuation sites could be located in the Long Beach Peninsula area, and will provide an opportunity for all attendees to participate in an interactive environment and learn about tsunami vertical evacuation.

Questions regarding the project or meeting may be forwarded to Jeana Wiser, student of Urban Planning at University of Washington, at wiserjc@gmail.com.


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Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Tsunami Safe Haven Project Open House

South Bend, Washington – The Tsunami Safe Haven project team (University of Washington, Pacific County Emergency Management Agency, Shoalwater Bay Tribe, and the Washington State Emergency Management Division) will be holding a conclusion meeting regarding vertical evacuation in the Tokeland and North Cove area on Tuesday, November 09, 2010 at 5:30 p.m. at the Shoalwater Bay Tribal Center meeting room.

Please consider attending this meeting as it is an excellent opportunity to view and hear the outcome of previous meetings and research. This meeting will be conducted in an open house style with various thematic stations looking at the following topics: community meeting results, tsunami hazard information, vertical evacuation information, vertical evacuation structure design elements, cost estimates, and walking and evacuation routes.

Questions regarding the project or meeting may be forwarded to Jeana Wiser, student of Urban Planning at University of Washington, at wiserjc@gmail.com.

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Tuesday, October 26, 2010

AHAB Siren Startup

South Bend, Washington – A new All Hazard Alert Broadcast (AHAB) siren was installed at the North Willapa Harbor Grange in North Cove. The siren startup is scheduled to take place on Monday, November 1, 2010 in the afternoon. Residents should be aware that the initial startup and operation of the siren requires that audible tests be completed.

Please note that this siren will not be included with the regular monthly test scheduled for noon the same day.

Residents with questions or concerns may contact the PCEMA office at (360) 875-9340.

Friday, October 22, 2010

Strong Autumn Storms Predicted for October 23rd and 24th

South Bend, Washington – The National Weather Service, Portland Office, has predicted strong autumn storms for the weekend of October 23 – 24, 2010. Two systems are expected to pass over Pacific County over the next 48 – 72 hours with the strongest storm arriving Saturday night and continuing through early Sunday. Hazards expected include large seas, possible minor coastal flooding, heavy rain, with high wind accompanying the second storm.

Rainfall is expected to total 3 – 5” over the course of the two systems with the heaviest rainfall on Saturday evening. Minor coastal flooding is also expected in areas along Raymond and Willapa Bay as some of the highest astronomical tides of the year will occur during the same time period. A coastal flood watch is expected for the time of high tide.

The National Weather Service is expected to issue a high wind warning for the coast for Saturday night through Sunday morning, with gusts 50 – 60 mph inland, and 70 – 75 mph along the beaches and headlands, with lower speed gusty winds continuing through Sunday. In conjunction, predictions include very large seas, peaking Sunday evening, and snow at the pass levels in the amount of 8 – 18” at 5,000 feet.

Precautionary/Preparedness Actions:

A high wind warning means a hazardous high wind event is expected or occurring. Sustained wind speeds of at least 40 mph or gusts of 58 mph or more can lead to property damage.

For the most up to date weather information from the NWS please visit http://www.weather.gov/portland. This page brings up all advisories, watches, and warnings for the southwest Washington area.

Thursday, October 14, 2010

Sheriff John Didion Issues Commendation

South Bend, Washington – At the Pacific County Emergency Management Agency meeting held October 12, 2010 in South Bend, Sheriff John Didion presented Jackie Sheldon a Commendation for volunteer service in recognition of her efforts in organizing the Eye of the Storm Pacific County Community Disaster Preparedness Fair, held September 25, 2010 at the Ocean Park Elementary School and in recognition of her work in response to the December 2007 windstorm.

The Commendation read “Jackie Sheldon is hereby recognized for outstanding service and dedication to her community as an advocate for preparedness. In the advent of any disaster situation many lives will be saved as a result of her consistent and hard working efforts.”

In July 2010 the Pacific County Emergency Management Agency staff and Sheriff Didion nominated Jackie Sheldon for the Federal Emergency Management Agency Citizen Corp Individual Achievement Award. The Individual Achievement Award nomination and the Pacific County Sheriff’s Office Commendation illustrate how citizens can take action and do their part to be prepared. The public is a valuable resource in preparing for, responding to, and recovering from disasters. Every day citizens like Jackie take part in community emergency planning and problem solving, model programs for use by other individuals, and show how individuals can take action to make a difference in their community.

The Pacific County Emergency Management Agency is grateful for citizens like Jackie, who are involved and willing to demonstrate and forward a personal emergency preparedness message and program throughout the year.

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Thursday, September 16, 2010

NOAA Weather Radio Promotion

South Bend, Washington – The Pacific County Emergency Management Agency is coordinating a NOAA Weather Radio Promotion on Saturday, September 25, 2010, from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Customers will be able to purchase a NOAA weather radio and have it programmed on site by amateur radio operators. Participating locations are: • North Pacific County o Bud’s Lumber, 220 W Robert Bush Drive, South Bend o Dennis Company TV & Appliance, 124 4th Street, Raymond • South Pacific County o Dennis Company, 201 N Pacific, Long Beach o Wirkkala Radio Shack, 4912 Pacific Avenue, Long Beach Weather radios alert local residents to many immediate, life-threatening hazards, like weather, tsunamis, volcanoes, hazardous releases, and other dangerous events. Without a weather radio, a critical emergency warning message from local emergency authorities could be missed. NOAA Weather Radio is a service of the National Weather Service, a part of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) and the U.S. Dept of Commerce. NOAA Weather Radio is the voice of the National Weather Service, broadcasting the latest area weather forecasts and conditions 24 hours a day. Additional NOAA Weather Radio information is available at www.emd.wa.gov. Citizens with questions can contact the PCEMA office at (360) 875-9340 or (360) 642-9340.

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Chill – It Was Only a Drill: AHAB Siren Results

South Bend, Washington – As part of a true “end-to-end” test of the tsunami warning system, the All Hazard Alert Broadcast (AHAB) siren system was tested today. Following the statewide Drop, Cover, and Hold Drill at 10:15 a.m., the AHAB sirens were activated using the actual warning tone and the standard voice test message. Preliminary results for today’s drill are: Ilwaco - 807 Whealdon: siren, voice, light Cape Disappointment - Space 90: siren, voice, light Surfside - 33104 J Place: siren, voice, no light Ocean Park - 21611 V Ln: siren, voice, light Ocean Park - 2017 304th Ln: siren, voice, no light Ocean Park - 27212 U Street: siren, voice, light Ocean Park - 2408 245th Lane: siren, voice, light Bay Center - 408 Bay Center Road: siren, voice, light Seaview - 3801 N Place: no siren, no voice, no light Long Beach - 9211 X Street: siren, voice, light Long Beach - 319 2nd Street: siren, voice, light North Cove - 2829 SR 105 (PCFD5)* North Cove - Seabreeze Rd/Warrenton Cannery Rd: siren, voice* *PCEMA is still awaiting spotter reports from the North Cove area. The cause for the AHAB siren in Seaview not activating during today’s drill will be investigated. Residents with questions or concerns may contact the PCEMA office at (360) 875-9340 or (360) 642-9340.

Saturday, August 28, 2010

Chill – It’s Only a Drill

South Bend, Washington – On September 15, 2010 shortly after 10:15 a.m. the All Hazard Alert Broadcast (AHAB) sirens will be tested sounding both the standard test message and the actual warning tone. The AHAB sirens in Pacific County and the other outer Washington coastal counties are being activated to conduct a true “end-to-end” test of the entire tsunami warning system. This test will help familiarize residents with the sound made by the AHAB sirens during an actual tsunami warning. It will differ from the routine monthly testing that occurs on the first Monday of each month since it will broadcast an audible siren wail tone instead of a chime tone; however, the voice message will be exactly the same as the routine test message. NOAA weather radios set to receive the required monthly test will also activate during this test. This event is a key element in the Weather Radio Awareness Month campaign in Washington State as well as National Preparedness Month and earthquake and tsunami education efforts. Citizens with questions or concerns should contact the Pacific County Emergency Management office at (360) 642-9340 or (360) 875-9340.

Friday, July 16, 2010

Walking Volunteers Needed!

South Bend, Washington – University of Washington grad student, Jeana Wiser will be on the Long Beach Peninsula July 19th – July 24th, 2010, to ground-truth work for the joint Pacific County, Washington State, and University of Washington Vertical Evacuation project. Ms. Wiser will be looking at four communities: Long Beach, Ocean Park/ North Peninsula, Ilwaco/Seaview, and Tokeland/North Cove. For each community Ms. Wiser intends to examine in detail, each of the proposed vertical evacuation sites, current assembly areas, and areas where walking routes could be reinforced to provide easy access to high ground.

Additionally, Ms. Wiser is seeking volunteers from the community to walk routes from their house/workplace to one of the proposed vertical evacuation sites, high ground or current assembly areas.

Each walking volunteer will be asked to provide the following information: 1) address of starting point; 2) address of ending point; 3) walking speed (slower than average, average, faster than average;) 4) age (18 and younger, 19-30, 31-50, 50-65, 65+); and 5) time it took to complete the walk.

If you are interested in volunteering to walk or know others who may be interested please contact Ms. Wiser at wiserjc@gmail.com.

Pacific County Emergency Management thanks everyone for their participation and assistance!

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Friday, July 2, 2010

Vertical Evacuation Opportunities in Tokeland/North Cove

South Bend, Washington – A meeting regarding vertical evacuation opportunities in Tokeland/North Cove will be held July 13, 2010 from 6:00 p.m. to 8:00 p.m. at the Shoalwater Bay Tribal Center, 2373 Old Tokeland Road. This meeting is open to all residents of the Tokeland/North Cove area. Draft results from the initial meeting held on June 22, 2010 that illustrate where potential vertical evacuation sites could be located as well as the types of evacuation strategies that could be employed in the Tokeland/North Cove area will be presented for further discussion. This meeting will be an opportunity for all attendees to learn about tsunami vertical evacuation and participate in analyzing the strengths and weaknesses of various alternatives that have been developed based upon community input. All are welcome and encouraged to attend. Residents with questions or concerns may contact the PCEMA office at (360) 875-9338.

Monday, June 28, 2010

Tsunami Siren Test Scheduled for Monday, July 5th

South Bend, Washington – The Pacific County Emergency Management Agency’s (PCEMA) All Hazard Alert Broadcast (AHAB) siren system next regularly scheduled monthly test will be Monday, July 5th at noon. It is recommended that residents of Pacific County mark their calendars for the monthly AHAB siren system test. The test is currently scheduled for the first Monday of every month at noon.

During testing, the sirens will sound the Westminster Chimes for 10 seconds followed by a 15 second verbal message stating “The following is a test of the siren warning system. It is only a test. This is a test of the siren warning system. If this had been a real emergency you should tune your radio to your local radio station or listen to this system for further instructions. This was only a test.”

In actual events, the AHAB sirens will sound a constant tone for three continuous minutes, and may be followed by a verbal message. Both the Westminster chimes and the actual warning tone can be heard by visiting the PCEMA website at www.co.pacific.wa.us/pcema and clicking on the Tsunami tab.

There are currently twelve AHAB sirens installed in Pacific County located in the areas of North Cove, Bay Center, Ilwaco, Seaview, Long Beach, Surfside, and Ocean Park. Sirens are not designed to be heard indoors and the sound may also be impacted by adverse weather. Residents are encouraged to have alternate methods of warning such as NOAA weather radios, which are tested weekly and can be heard indoors. Residents with questions or concerns may contact the PCEMA office at (360) 875-9340 or (360) 642-9340.

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

Pacific County Amateur Radio Operators Plan For Upcoming Field Day

Long Beach, Washington – The Pacific County Amateur Radio Club (PCARC) will hold the 9th annual North American Field Day operating event the weekend of June 26th at the Port of Peninsula and Morehead Park. This waterfront area has proven to be an excellent site for radio transmissions and is utilized through the generosity of both Port of Peninsula and Pacific County.

Field Day is an operating event and informal contest where Radio Amateurs in North America emphasize emergency communications skills and rapid setup of radios and antennas powered by batteries and/or generators. After a 24 hour setup period, the 24 hour operating event begins during which local amateur radio operators will practice emergency message handling as well as make hundreds of radio contacts, likely including several Emergency Operations Centers (EOC’s) throughout the country. Annually contact is made with nearly all states and Provinces of Canada and Mexico and the Virgin Islands

All told the Pacific County Amateur Radio Club will operate a “Get on the Air” Station, a Single Side Band Station, a Morse Code Station, a packet (digital) Station, and a VHF Station, demonstrating the capability of radio amateurs of Pacific County. Friday evening, prior to the start of the contest portion of Field Day, operating Field Day stations make test contacts with preset locations locally and in adjacent states. This test proves the viability of the each working station and antenna arrays.

The public is invited to observe amateur radio at work and learn how to make contact with another radio station in North America. One station is dedicated for use by the public and for amateurs who do not typically operate on the short-wave bands. The best time to visit operations is Saturday midday through late afternoon. Stop by the information booth for a brochure, a tour, or to ask questions about becoming a licensed radio amateur. The information booth will be located in the Port of Peninsula parking area.

The Pacific County Amateur Radio Club meets the second Saturday of each month at 9:00AM at Hunter’s Inn in Naselle. Anyone interested in ham radio is encouraged to attend. For more information contact: Dick Lemke, President and Field Day Chairman 665-2438 or Bob Cline, Emergency Services Volunteer 665-4496.

Monday, June 7, 2010

AHAB Siren System Test Results

South Bend, Washington – The All Hazard Alert Broadcast (AHAB) siren system spotter reports have been received by the Pacific County Emergency Management Agency (PCEMA) and forwarded to the Washington Emergency Management Division (WAEMD). The results for today’s test are: Notes: The sequence heard today was 1) chimes with light, 2) wailing siren, 3) high-low pitch siren, 4) chimes, and 5) voice. The voice announcement was short, “tsunami, volcano, hazardous material”. There was no indication this event was a test. At some sites it was reported that the voice was overdriven and distorted. Ilwaco - 807 Whealdon: no chimes, no voice, no light Cape Disappointment - Space 90: chimes, voice, light activated Surfside - 33104 J Place: chimes, voice, light activated Ocean Park - 21611 V Ln: chimes, voice, light activated Ocean Park - 2017 304th Ln: chimes, voice activated, no light Ocean Park - 27212 U Street: chimes, voice, light activated Ocean Park - 2408 245th Lane: chimes, voice, light activated Bay Center - 408 Bay Center Road: chimes, voice activated, light unknown Seaview - 3801 N Place: chimes, voice, light activated Long Beach - 9211 X Street: chimes, voice, light activated Long Beach - 319 2nd Street: chimes, voice, light activated North Cove - 2829 SR 105 (PCFD5)* North Cove - Seabreeze Rd/Warrenton Cannery Rd* *PCEMA is still awaiting spotter reports from the North Cove area. Volunteers for the Pacific County Sheriff’s Office Radio Amateur Civil Emergency Service (RACES) serve as AHAB siren spotters every month. Without their service PCEMA would be unable to submit timely and accurate monthly test results to WAEMD. The cause for the AHAB sirens sounding multiple tones and alerts during today’s test is still under investigation. PCEMA will continue to work with WAEMD to determine the cause of the malfunction. Residents with questions or concerns may contact the PCEMA office at (360) 875-9340 or (360) 642-9340.

Erroneous AHAB Siren System Test Today

South Bend, Washington – The Pacific County Emergency Management Agency’s (PCEMA) All Hazard Alert Broadcast (AHAB) siren system was activated today as part of the regular monthly testing schedule. There were issues with the siren activations and preliminary reports are indicating that results at each siren site may differ. PCEMA is awaiting the official spotter reports. PCEMA is working closely with the Washington Emergency Management Division to determine the cause of the malfunction. The standard procedure for the monthly test is for the sirens to sound the Westminster Chimes for 10 seconds followed by a 15 second verbal message stating “The following is a test of the siren warning system. It is only a test. This is a test of the siren warning system. If this had been a real emergency you should tune your radio to your local radio station or listen to this system for further instructions. This was only a test.” In actual events, the AHAB sirens will sound the constant tone for three continuous minutes, and may be followed by a verbal message. Both the Westminster chimes and the actual warning tone can be heard by visiting the PCEMA website at www.co.pacific.wa.us/pcema. Residents with questions or concerns may contact the PCEMA office at (360) 875-9340 or (360) 642-9340.

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

NWS Issues High Wind Warning

South Bend, Washington – The National Weather Service (NWS) in Portland has issued a high wind warning which is in effect from 1:00 p.m. this afternoon to 9:00 p.m. this evening. An unseasonably strong low pressure system will move northeast to Vancouver Island this afternoon and tonight bringing strong winds to the coast late this morning through this evening. South winds of 40 mph with gusts to around 60 mph are expected. Gusts to 70 mph are possible at exposed headlands and beaches. Precautionary/Preparedness Actions: A high wind warning means a hazardous high wind event is expected or occurring. Sustained wind speeds of at least 40 mph or gusts of 58 mph or more can lead to property damage. For the most up to date weather information from the NWS please visit http://www.weather.gov/portland. This page brings up all advisories, watches, and warnings for the southwest Washington area.

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

PCEMA Presents Social Networking to HSR3

South Bend, Washington – The Pacific County Emergency Management Agency (PCEMA) gave a presentation on social networking at the Homeland Security Region 3 Committee meeting today. PCEMA Director “Tsunami Steph” and Deputy Director “Disaster Denise” presented an overview of social networking and web 2.0. They also highlighted the different applications currently used by PCEMA including Twitter, Facebook, BlogSpot, and YouTube. Each application was demonstrated to give an idea how social networking is helping PCEMA reach other audiences. If you would like to get involved in PCEMA’s social networking efforts you can visit PCEMA’s blog at www.pcema.blogspot.com, follow DisasterDenise and TsunamiSteph on Twitter, or “Like” the Pacific County Emergency Management Agency page on Facebook. For additional information or if you have questions, please contact the PCEMA office at (360) 875-9340.

Thursday, April 1, 2010

High Wind Warning and Coastal Flood Advisory in Effect Friday

South Bend, Washington – The National Weather Service (NWS) has issued a high wind warning which is in effect from 1:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. Friday and a coastal flood advisory in effect from 1:00 a.m. to 6:00 a.m. Friday. A strong low pressure system will move into the northeast Pacific late tonight and early Friday morning. This system will drive a strong warm front onshore into the Pacific Northwest late tonight for windy conditions along the coast. South winds increasing to 30-40 mph after midnight with gusts 70-80 mph are expected for the beaches and coastal headlands. As a cold front moves onshore Friday morning, the coastal communities will see winds increase to 30-40 mph with gusts 60-65 mph. The storm surge from the system coupled with the high tide Friday morning may result in minor tidal overflows along low-lying sections of the south Washington coast. Precautionary/Preparedness Actions: A high wind warning means a hazardous high wind event is expected or occurring. Sustained wind speeds of at least 40 mph or gusts of 58 mph or more can lead to property damage. A coastal flood advisory indicates that onshore winds and tides will combine to generate flooding of low areas along the shore. For the most up to date weather information from the NWS please visit http://www.weather.gov/portland. This page brings up all advisories, watches, and warnings for the southwest Washington area.

Sunday, March 28, 2010

High Wind Warning & High Surf Advisory Issued Sunday March 28, 2010

The National Weather Service in Portland has issued a high wind warning which is in effect from 8:00 pm this evening to 5:00 am Monday. The high wind watch is no longer in effect.
  • Winds: south winds of 30 to 40 mph with gusts up to 70 mph are expected at exposed headlands and beaches. Gusts of 60 mph are possible in the coastal communities.
  • Timing: strong winds are expected to develop later this evening with the strongest winds expected between 11:00 pm and 2:00 am. The winds will decrease by late tonight.
A high wind warning means a hazardous high wind event is expected or occurring. Sustained wind speeds of at least 40 mph or gusts of 58 mph or more can lead to property damage.

In addition, NWS Portland has issued a high surf advisory...which is in effect from midnight tonight to 5:00 Wednesday.

A series of strong storms in the Gulf of Alaska will bring large swell to the coast beginning this evening. Expect incoming swell to reach 20 feet along the coast by midnight tonight...then build to 23 to 25 feet by early Monday morning. Large swell will continue to pound the coastline through late Tuesday night. Incoming swell will subside to below 20 feet by early Wednesday morning.

A high surf advisory means that high surf will affect beaches in the advisory area...producing rip currents and localized beach erosion.


Friday, March 26, 2010

Monthly AHAB Siren Test April 5th

South Bend, Washington – The Pacific County Emergency Management Agency’s (PCEMA) All Hazard Alert Broadcast (AHAB) siren system next scheduled monthly test will be Monday, April 5th at noon. It is recommended that residents of Pacific County mark their calendars for the monthly AHAB siren system test. The test is currently scheduled for the first Monday of every month at noon. There are currently 13 AHAB sirens installed in Pacific County located in the areas of Ilwaco, Seaview, Long Beach, Surfside, Ocean Park, Bay Center, and North Cove. Sirens are not designed to be heard indoors and the sound may also be impacted by adverse weather. Residents are encouraged to have alternate methods of warning such as NOAA weather radios, which are tested weekly and can be heard indoors. The current procedure for the monthly test is for the sirens to sound the Westminster Chimes for 10 seconds followed by a 15 second verbal message stating “The following is a test of the siren warning system. It is only a test. This is a test of the siren warning system. If this had been a real emergency you should tune to your local radio station or listen to this system for further instructions. This was only a test.” In actual events, the AHAB sirens will sound a constant tone for three continuous minutes, and may be followed by a verbal message. Both the Westminster chimes and the actual warning tone can be heard by visiting the PCEMA website at www.co.pacific.wa.us/pcema and clicking on the Tsunami tab. Residents can also view a video clip of the AHAB test on the PCEMA Facebook page. Residents with questions or concerns may contact the PCEMA office at (360) 875-9340 or (360) 642-9340.

Saturday, February 27, 2010

Tsunami Advisory Cancelled

Release #4 South Bend, Washington – The National Weather Service has cancelled the tsunami advisory for the coastal areas of Washington and Oregon. Tsunami waves have generally remained one foot or less along the Washington and Oregon coasts and are expected to remain so for the remainder of the event through this evening. Coastal residents should still use great caution if venturing along the beach or near the water through this evening. Even very small tsunami waves can cause locally dangerous currents which are difficult to predict.

Tsunami Advisory Remains in Effect

Release #3 South Bend, Washington – A tsunami advisory remains in effect for the coastal areas of Washington, Oregon, and California. There is no tsunami watch or warning in effect at this time. A tsunami is a series of waves potentially dangerous for several hours after the initial arrival time. A tsunami is not a single wave event. For your own safety you are warned to stay out of the water, off the beach, and away from harbors and marinas. Pacific County officials strongly recommend that you stay off all local beaches. Do not go near the water until the tsunami advisory has been lifted. The threat is expected to begin around 2:00 p.m. this afternoon along the central Oregon coast. Sea level rises could continue for several hours. You can continue to monitor the situation at http://www.weather.gov/portland or http://wcatwc.arh.noaa.gov.

Tsunami Advisory in Effect

Release #2 South Bend, Washington – For your own safety you are warned to stay out of the water, off the beach, and away from harbors and marinas. Projected wave threat will begin in Oregon at 2:00 p.m. and continue for several hours on our local beaches. Pacific County officials strongly recommend that you stay off all local beaches. You can continue to monitor the situation at http://www.weather.gov/portland or http://wcatwc.arh.noaa.gov.

Tsunami Advisory in Effect

Release #1 South Bend, Washington – A tsunami advisory is in effect for the coastal areas of Washington, Oregon, and California. There is no tsunami watch or warning in effect. Repeat, no watch or warning is in effect. No significant coastal flooding is expected to be produced by this tsunami. However, some areas of the coast could experience dangerous currents and surges in harbors and bays. Coastal residents are advised to stay out of the water, off the beach, and away from harbors and marinas. Wave heights and currents are amplified by irregular shoreline and are difficult to predict. The predicted time of the onset of the sea level rise at Westport, WA is 2:57 p.m. For arrival times at additional locations visit http://wcatwc.arh.noaa.gov. The threat is expected to begin around 2:00 p.m. this afternoon along the central Oregon coast. Sea level rises could continue for several hours. The greatest sea level rise may not be until an hour or two after the initial onset. Pacific County officials are meeting at 9:00 a.m. this morning to determine what response is needed at this time. Another press release will be issued following that meeting. For the most up to date weather information from the National Weather Service please visit http://www.weather.gov/portland. This page brings up all advisories, watches, and warnings for the southwest Washington area.

Thursday, February 11, 2010

High Wind Warning Thursday Night

South Bend, Washington – The National Weather Service (NWS) in Portland has issued a high wind warning which is in effect from 4:00 p.m. Thursday to midnight Thursday night. Expect south winds of 35-45 mph with some gusts exceeding 70 mph mainly along beaches and headlands. The strong winds will develop late this afternoon and decrease late this evening with the strongest winds over a two hour period associated with the front. The timing of the frontal passage currently looks to be around 5:00 p.m. to 8:00 p.m. Precautionary/Preparedness Actions: A high wind warning means a hazardous high wind event is expected or occurring. Sustained wind speeds of at least 40 mph or gusts of 58 mph or more can lead to property damage. For the most up to date weather information from the NWS please visit http://www.weather.gov/portland. This page brings up all advisories, watches, and warnings for the southwest Washington area.

Monday, February 8, 2010

Ilwaco Recognized as TsunamiReady and StormReady

Ilwaco, WA, has completed NOAA’s National Weather Service StormReady® and TsunamiReady™ programs, better equipping the city to handle severe weather and tsunamis. The City of Ilwaco, supported by the Pacific County Emergency Management Council, fulfilled a rigorous set of warning and evacuation criteria, including the development of a formal hazardous weather plan. The City of Ilwaco, as well as the entire peninsula is vulnerable to tsunamis and severe weather due to its location on the Washington coast, at the mouth of the Columbia River. As we experienced in the December storms of 2008, it’s not if, but when we will experience the next disaster. These programs raise public awareness and preparedness which are essential for the safety of our citizens. The City of Ilwaco was able to achieve this recognition because of the planning partnerships we have within our county along with state and federal agencies like the National Weather Service. The continuing support of the Pacific County Emergency Management Director Stephanie Fritts and Deputy Director Denise Rowlett has raised awareness throughout the county. Aided by the focus and support brought to this important subject by the Pacific County Commissioners and County Sheriff John Didion, the citizens of Ilwaco will be better prepared for the next event. At the ceremony in the new Ilwaco Community Building, a recognition letter and TsunamiReady™ and StormReady® road signs were presented to city council officials, Gary Forner, Gini Chin, Will Greene, and Pacific County Emergency Management Director Stephanie Fritts. To be recognized as TsunamiReady™ and StormReady®, a community must: • Establish a 24-hour warning point and emergency operations center; • Have more than one way to receive tsunami and severe weather warnings and forecasts to alert the public; • Create a system that monitors local weather conditions; • Promote the importance of public readiness through community seminars; and • Develop a formal hazardous weather plan, which includes training severe weather spotters and holding emergency exercises. Resilience to disasters is everyone's responsibility. Educating yourself and your family on environmental hazards, maintaining a disaster supply kit, and having an emergency plan in place, are all proactive ways you can be better prepared. The TsunamiReady™ and StormReady® programs are part of NOAA National Weather Service's working partnership with the International Association of Emergency Managers, the National Emergency Management Association, and the National Tsunami Hazard Mitigation Program. The TsunamiReady™ and StormReady® recognitions expire in three years, after which the city will go through a renewal process. The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, an agency of the U.S. Commerce Department, is dedicated to enhancing economic security and national safety through the prediction and research of weather and climate-related events and information service delivery for transportation, and by providing environmental stewardship of our nation's coastal and marine resources. Through the emerging Global Earth Observation System of Systems (GEOSS), NOAA is working with its federal partners, more than 70 countries and the European Commission to develop a global monitoring network that is as integrated as the planet it observes, predicts and protects. On the Web: TsunamiReady™ program: http://www.tsunamiready.noaa.gov StormReady® program: http://www.stormready.noaa.gov StormReady® and TsunamiReady™ are registered trademarks of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration.

Friday, January 22, 2010

Mark Your Calendars for the Monthly AHAB Siren Test

South Bend, Washington – The Pacific County Emergency Management Agency’s (PCEMA) All Hazard Alert Broadcast (AHAB) siren system next scheduled monthly test will be Monday, February 1st at noon. It is recommended that residents of Pacific County mark their calendars for the monthly AHAB siren system test. The test is currently scheduled for the first Monday of every month at noon. The current procedure for the monthly test is for the sirens to sound the Westminster Chimes for 10 seconds followed by a 15 second verbal message stating “The following is a test of the siren warning system. It is only a test. This is a test of the siren warning system. If this had been a real emergency you should tune to your local radio station or listen to this system for further instructions. This was only a test.” In actual events, the AHAB sirens will sound a constant tone for three continuous minutes, and may be followed by a verbal message. Both the Westminster chimes and the actual warning tone can be heard by visiting the PCEMA website at www.co.pacific.wa.us/pcema and clicking on the Tsunami tab. Residents can also view a video clip of the AHAB test on the PCEMA Facebook page. There are currently 13 AHAB sirens installed in Pacific County located in the areas of Ilwaco, Seaview, Long Beach, Surfside, Ocean Park, Bay Center, and North Cove. Sirens are not designed to be heard indoors and the sound may also be impacted by adverse weather. Residents are encouraged to have alternate methods of warning such as NOAA weather radios, which are tested weekly and can be heard indoors. Residents with questions or concerns may contact the PCEMA office at (360) 875-9340 or (360) 642-9340.

Monday, January 18, 2010

High Wind Warning Issued and High Surf Advisory Continues

South Bend, Washington – The National Weather Service (NWS) in Portland has issued a high wind warning and the high surf advisory continues for the north Oregon and south Washington coasts. The high wind warning is in effect from 8:00 p.m. this evening to 4:00 p.m. Tuesday. Southeast to south winds will increase late this evening to 30-40 mph with gusts up to 65 mph. The strongest wind will be near headlands and on beaches. Wind gusts to 60 mph will begin after 10:00 p.m. tonight in the south part of Tillamook County, OR and spread north. The very strong wind will continue through much of Tuesday afternoon. The high surf advisory is now in effect until 6:00 p.m. Tuesday. A strong pacific storm generated large seas that will continue to bring high surf conditions to the coastline through this afternoon. High surf conditions will ease for the evening but return later tonight and continue through Tuesday as the next Pacific storm impacts the coast. Seas were 25-30 feet earlier Monday morning but have since subsided to around 20 feet. Seas will lower a little more during the day then build to 20-25 feet later tonight and Tuesday. Precautionary/Preparedness Actions: A high wind warning means a hazardous high wind event is expected or occurring. Sustained wind speeds of at least 40 mph or gusts of 58 mph or more can lead to property damage. Local power disruptions and tree damage are possible. A high surf advisory means that high surf will affect beaches in the advisory area, producing rip currents and localized beach erosion. Exercise caution along beaches. Unpredictable and destructive waves may wash over beaches, jetties, and other structures with no warning. This is not a time to be near the water. Be sure to use caution along the coast this week and stay away from beaches. For the most up to date weather information from the NWS please visit http://www.weather.gov/portland. This page brings up all advisories, watches, and warnings for the southwest Washington area.

High Wind Warning Issued for Pacific County

South Bend, Washington – The National Weather Service in Portland has issued yet another high wind warning for Pacific County.

The high wind warning is in effect from 8:00 p.m. this afternoon to 4:00 p.m. Tuesday for the North Oregon and South Washington Coasts. South/southeast winds will increase this evening and continue into Tuesday afternoon. Winds will reach 30-40 mph at inland areas with gusts to 65 mph near beaches and headlands.

Precautionary/Preparedness Actions:

A high wind warning means a hazardous high wind event is expected or occurring. Sustained wind speeds of at least 40 mph or gusts of 58 mph or more can lead to property damage. Local power disruptions are possible.

Sunday, January 17, 2010

High Wind Warning and High Surf Advisory Issued

South Bend, Washington – The National Weather Service in Portland has issued a high wind warning and a high surf advisory for the north Oregon and south Washington coasts. The high wind warning is in effect from 7:00 p.m. this evening to 8:00 a.m. Monday. Southeast winds will turn southerly and increase this evening and continue into Monday morning. Strong south winds of 35-45 mph are expected with gusts up to 65 mph at open beaches and headlands. The high surf advisory is in effect from 10:00 p.m. this evening to 3:00 p.m. Monday. A strong pacific storm will move northward off the Oregon and Washington coasts tonight and Monday morning. This storm will generate large seas that will impact the coastline beginning later Sunday evening and continue into Monday afternoon before subsiding. Seas are expected to peak near 25 feet Monday morning. Precautionary/Preparedness Actions: A high wind warning means a hazardous high wind event is expected or occurring. Sustained wind speeds of at least 40 mph or gusts of 58 mph or more can lead to property damage. Local power disruptions and tree damage are possible. A high surf advisory means that high surf will affect beaches in the advisory area, producing rip currents and localized beach erosion. Exercise caution along beaches. Unpredictable and destructive waves may wash over beaches, jetties, and other structures with no warning. This is not a time to be near the water. Be sure to use caution along the coast this week and stay away from beaches.

Friday, January 15, 2010

Hazardous Weather Outlook

South Bend, Washington – The National Weather Service (NWS) in Portland issued a hazardous weather outlook for portions of northwest Oregon and southwest Washington for the holiday weekend. A deep low pressure system approaches the coast Sunday as it heads toward Vancouver Island. Strong winds are possible on coastal areas Sunday afternoon and evening potentially bringing wind gusts in excess of 70 mph. The predictions made by the NWS have been made well in advance of the storm and will continue to change throughout the weekend. For the most up to date weather information from the NWS please visit http://www.weather.gov/portland. This page brings up all advisories, watches, and warnings for the southwest Washington area. NWS holiday weekend forecast: Tonight: Rain likely before 10pm. Cloudy, with a low around 42. North wind between 3 and 7 mph. Chance of precipitation is 70%. Saturday: Showers likely, mainly after 4pm. Cloudy, with a high near 48. East wind around 10 mph. Chance of precipitation is 60%. Saturday Night: Rain. Low around 46. Breezy, with a south southeast wind between 16 and 26 mph, with gusts as high as 39 mph. Chance of precipitation is 80%. Sunday: Rain. High near 50. Breezy, with a south wind between 21 and 26 mph, with gusts as high as 43 mph. Chance of precipitation is 100%. Sunday Night: Rain. Low around 47. Breezy. Chance of precipitation is 90%. M.L.King Day: Rain. High near 50. Chance of precipitation is 80%. Monday Night: Rain. Cloudy, with a low around 43. Weather spotters are encouraged to report significant weather conditions according to standard operating procedures.

NOAA Weather Radio Program

South Bend, Washington – The Pacific County Emergency Management Agency (PCEMA) is participating in a NOAA Weather Radio Program designed to educate the public on the warnings and alerts that may be issued from the National Weather Service. All Pacific County residents are welcome to attend. Three sessions are scheduled: January 26, 2010 – 6:00 p.m. Willapa Harbor Community Center, 916 W First Street, South Bend January 27, 2010 – 9:00 a.m. Pacific County Fire District 1, 26110 Ridge Avenue, Ocean Park January 27, 2010 – 2:00 p.m. City of Ilwaco Community Center, 158 First Avenue N, Ilwaco Program participants will receive important information about tsunamis, evacuation routes, and how to make a home preparedness kit. At each session NOAA weather radios will be given to the first 60 residents that meet specific income levels. NOAA weather radios provide warning for multiple natural and man-made hazards but are especially important to obtain a tsunami warning while indoors. Additional NOAA weather radio information is available at http://www.emd.wa.gov. The NOAA Weather Radio Program is coordinated among the Washington State Emergency Management Division, the National Tsunami Hazard Mitigation Program, and PCEMA. For additional information or a program application, please call the PCEMA office at (360) 875-9340 or visit www.co.pacific.wa.us/pcema or email b.walker@emd.wa.gov.

High Wind Warning Extended

South Bend, Washington – The National Weather Service (NWS) in Portland has extended the high wind warning to 11:00 a.m. this morning for the south Washington and north Oregon coasts.

South winds 30-40 mph with gusts to 65 mph at headlands and exposed beaches are expected. Coastal communities will have gusts 40-50 mph.

A high wind warning means a hazardous high wind event is expected or occurring. Sustained wind speeds of at least 40 mph or gusts of 58 mph or more can lead to property damage.

For the most up to date weather information from the NWS please visit http://www.weather.gov/portland. This page brings up all advisories, watches, and warnings for the southwest Washington area.

High Wind Warning in Effect

South Bend, Washington – The National Weather Service (NWS) in Portland issued a high wind warning this morning in effect until 9:00 a.m. for the south Washington and north Oregon coasts.

South winds 30-40 mph with gusts to 65 mph at headlands and exposed beaches are expected. Coastal communities will have gusts 40-50 mph.

A high wind warning means a hazardous high wind event is expected or occurring. Sustained wind speeds of at least 40 mph or gusts of 58 mph or more can lead to property damage.

For the most up to date weather information from the NWS please visit http://www.weather.gov/portland. This page brings up all advisories, watches, and warnings for the southwest Washington area.

Monday, January 11, 2010

Warning and Advisory Issued for Pacific County

South Bend, Washington – The National Weather Service in Portland has issued a high wind warning and a high surf advisory for Pacific County.

The high wind warning is in effect from 1:00 p.m. this afternoon to 10:00 p.m. this evening for the North Oregon and South Washington Coasts. South winds will increase this afternoon and continue into the evening. Winds will reach 25-40 mph at inland areas with gusts of 60-65 mph near beaches and headlands.

The high surf advisory is in effect from 4:00 p.m. this afternoon to 4:00 a.m. Tuesday morning for the South Washington and North and Central Oregon Coasts. A strong low pressure system off the coast will cause seas to build to between 20-24 feet tonight and impact the surf zone along the coast. The waves will decrease some by Tuesday morning but remain higher than normal for several more days.

Precautionary/Preparedness Actions:

A high wind warning means a hazardous high wind event is expected or occurring. Sustained wind speeds of at least 40 mph or gusts of 58 mph or more can lead to property damage. Local power disruptions are possible.

A high surf advisory means that high surf will affect beaches in the advisory area, producing rip currents and localized beach erosion. Be sure to use caution along the coast this week and stay away from beaches.

Friday, January 8, 2010

Extremely Dangerous Erosion Zone

South Bend, Washington – Significant erosion along the Pacific Ocean beach in the North Cove – Grayland area of Pacific County, Washington has uncovered portions of a historic shipwreck. This area – known commonly as “wash-a-way” beach is an active erosion zone.

“Wash-a-way” beach is subject to unpredictable and dangerous ocean waves and currents. Sand dunes and banks in this area are subject to erosion, sudden movement, and collapse without warning. Structures, roadways, and other materials continue to fall into the ocean and pose a potential hazard to personal safety.

The public is warned to stay away from this shipwreck and the entire area. Residents and tourists should consider the entire “wash-a-way” beach area as potentially hazardous. It is not a safe place for the public to visit.

Questions may be forwarded to Bryan Harrison, County Administrative Officer, at (360) 875-9334 or bharrison@co.pacific.wa.us.

Wednesday, January 6, 2010

AHAB Siren Maintenance

South Bend, Washington – Maintenance will be conducted on the All Hazard Alert Broadcast (AHAB) siren system in Pacific County on Thursday, January 7, 2010. The main area of focus is sirens on the Long Beach Peninsula. Residents should be aware that sirens could activate during this maintenance visit.

The January 4th monthly test showed that there are still issues to be worked out with the AHAB siren system. The Pacific County Emergency Management Agency, Washington State Emergency Management Division, and Federal Signal are all working together to alleviate these issues.

Residents with questions or concerns may contact the PCEMA office at (360) 875-9340 or (360) 642-9340.