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

Friday, September 16, 2011

Free Public Event: Tsunami Train-the-Trainer

Contact: Natasha Nesbitt, AmeriCorps* VISTA Member
Pacific County Emergency Management Agency
(360) 875-9409 or nnesbitt@co.pacific.wa.us

South Bend, Washington – The Pacific County Emergency Management Agency (PCEMA) will be offering a free six hour course for Tsunami Public Education on October 11, 2011 at Pacific County Fire District 1 (26110 Ridge Avenue, Ocean Park, WA 98640). The course will begin at 8:30 a.m. and end at 3:30 p.m. with a one hour midday break. Workbooks will also be provided.

Topics for the course include: near-and far-source tsunami events and scenarios, the Cascadia Subduction Zone, tsunami modeling, inundation mapping in Washington, local vulnerabilities, emergency management systems, human behavior to risk, and community training.

The Train-the-Trainer program aims to develop an educational curriculum to train qualified Tsunami public education instructors. It is a joint effort of the NOAA Center for Tsunami Research (NCTR) and the Washington State Emergency Management Division (WAEMD), and has been organized locally by PCEMA. Participants will gain skills and knowledge regarding: local hazards, risk reduction, tsunami response, and community assessment. The goal of this course is to better prepare the citizens and communities of Pacific County by developing and coordinating disaster preparedness public education programs.

All persons interested in participating must pre-register with Denise Rowlett by calling (360) 642-9338 or (360) 875-9338 or email drowlett@co.pacific.wa.us.

# # #

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Chill - It's Only a Drill

South Bend, Washington – On September 21, 2011 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 for the full 3 minute warning 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 may contact the Pacific County Emergency Management office at (360) 642-9340 or (360) 875-9340.  In addition, a post-test survey is available for residents at www.weather.gov/test. 

# # #

Friday, September 2, 2011

VISTA Member Selection

South Bend, Washington – The Pacific County Emergency Management Agency (PCEMA) is pleased to announce Natasha Nesbitt as the selected AmeriCorps VISTA (Volunteers in Service to America) member.  Natasha will serve with PCEMA for 12 months to build and strengthen the local volunteer base by developing a strong public education outreach program to enhance disaster preparedness and response needs in Pacific County with a focus on low income and vulnerable communities.

PCEMA was awarded an AmeriCorps VISTA member position for the 2011-2012 program year.  The Washington Service Corps (WSC) handles all administrative benefits of the AmeriCorps VISTA program.  The WSC is administered by the Washington State Employment Security Department with federal funding provided by the Corporation for National and Community Service.

AmeriCorps VISTA is the national service program designed specifically to fight poverty. Founded as Volunteers in Service to America in 1965 and incorporated into the AmeriCorps network of programs in 1993, VISTA has been on the front lines in the fight against poverty in America for more than 40 years. 

VISTA members commit to serve full-time for a year at a non-profit organization or local government agency, working to strengthen community groups, build organizational capacity, help communities respond to disasters, and much more.  For more information about the AmeriCorps VISTA program visit http://www.americorps.gov/for_individuals/choose/vista.asp.

Thursday, September 1, 2011

It’s National Preparedness Month

Contact: Stephanie Fritts, Director
Pacific County Emergency Management Agency
(360) 875-9340 or sfritts@co.pacific.wa.us

South Bend, Washington – September 1st marks the start of National Preparedness Month.  In addition, this month will mark the ten year anniversary of 9/11.  The Pacific County Emergency Management Agency will remember those lost, honor our first responders and review our commitment to be prepared and to plan for emergencies. 

In looking back at recent emergency events affecting our community, the Pacific County Emergency Management Agency is interested in evaluating preparedness, and has prepared a short survey in regard to residents’ activities the night of the Japanese earthquake and tsunami.  The survey is available online at https://www.surveymonkey.com/s/PCEMASurvey.  It is our hope that you will take 10 minutes to answer the questions posed, as the answers will provide PCEMA direction in terms of community preparedness education needs. 

What does it mean to be prepared? For community groups and families it means households have an emergency supply kit so they can be self-reliant for a minimum of three days in case of an emergency, and that they have a plan to respond and reconnect after an emergency or disaster.  For information on creating a supply kit and writing a plan, visit www.ready.gov.

We're taking steps as an organization to become better prepared and informed, we urge you to take time to do the same at home and in our community.

# # #