Emergency communications drill on Saturday, May 17th!

Later this week, February 28th, marks the 13th anniversary of the Nisqually earthquake in our region – and, as noted in the following press release from Cindi Barker, today marks another quake anniversary for a community that is still recovering:

Today, February 22, marks the third anniversary of the Christchurch New Zealand earthquake.  Volunteers throughout Seattle continue to prepare should some disaster occur in this area.

On May 17, between 9:00 am and noon, community groups and emergency volunteers from throughout Seattle will be participating in a disaster drill to test neighborhood emergency preparedness.

The groups, known as the Seattle Emergency Communications Hubs, will join the City’s Auxiliary Communications Service (ACS) ham volunteers to simulate a volcanic explosion and it’s impact on Seattle, especially if the wind blows ash towards Seattle and resulting lahars (mud flows) impact infrastructure.  “It’s all about neighbors helping neighbors” said Carl Leon, one of the drill organizers.  “We set up neighborhood hubs where people can come to get information and share resources or skills to help those who have been affected.” 

The ACS volunteers will practice sending situation reports of conditions in each neighborhood from the Hubs into the City’s Emergency Operations Center.  In a real event, that information could be used by City response planners to assess conditions throughout the city and develop response plans.

Participating Hub locations include Broadview, Capitol Hill, Kirke Park, Lake City, Loyal Heights, Magnolia, Maple Leaf, Queen Anne, Rainier Beach, Shilshole, and West Seattle.  All Hub locations will welcome visitors and people who would like to learn and participate in the Hubs.

For more information about becoming a Hub volunteer, contact Cindi Barker, cbarker@qwest.net, 206-933-6968.

For information about becoming a Ham radio operator or member of ACS, contact Carl Leon at N7KUW@arrl.net.

You can learn more about citywide hubs and preparedness activities on our other communities page and find additional information about ACS (Auxilliary Communication Services) groups and other communications sources in the Resources section of our website.

[Update, 4/30/14:  We’ve added updated info about this drill here. West Seattle will activate our hub at Ercolini Park for this drill. We invite you to watch and/or listen!

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