Thursday, April 12, 2012

Taylorsville Participates in Utah Shakeout

The 2012 Great Utah ShakeOut is occurring statewide on April 17th- 19th and begins at 10:15 a.m. Register today!
ShakeOut exercises began in 2008 in California (see ShakeOut history). More than 7.9 million Californians participated in 2010, practicing Drop, Cover, and Hold On and other aspects of family, school, and organizational emergency plans.
We believe that Utah can become much more prepared for earthquakes  and be ready to recover quickly. The ShakeOut has been created to help people and organizations get better prepared for major earthquakes, and practice how to be protected when they happen.
Here are some suggestions on how you, your family and neighborhood can be involved:
  • Your family can check your 72 hour kits on or between the 17th and 19th to see if they have been updated to meet the needs of your family and have been rotated for perishables.
  • Your family can grab your 72 hour kits and meet at a specified location at a specified time. 
  • Take your family radio (FRS radios), determine a frequency and do a radio check with your neighbors.
  • Do a Block Captain/Leader drill ( have block leaders check on their assigned households and report to their designated meeting place for an accountability (who showed up, who didn’t).
  • Do a communication test like a calling/texting/emailing tree.
  • Send someone from your neighborhood as a runner to our area coordinator staging site to report in. 
  • If you have a HAM operator in your neighborhood, have them establish communication with the area coordinator and the assigned HAM operator at your area staging site.
  • Do an inventory of your food storage and water storage and determine if it meets at least the minimum recommendations by FEMA and Be Ready Utah.
  • Practice your Family Emergency Plan.
  • Place a call to your out-of-state contact, make everyone in your family knows the phone number.
  • Check the batteries in your emergency equipment (flashlights, radios, etc.).
  • Do a fire drill and practice your determined evacuation routes and meet at your designated meeting place.
  • Eat some of the supplies in your 72 hour kit so you know if it is something you want to continue putting into it.
  • Check the filters in any of your water filtering devices.
  • Check your first aid kits.
  • Pretend you do not have power for a few hours and determine if there are any issues that you haven’t addressed and need to better prepare for.
  • If you have any medical needs that require electricity, develop a contingency plan and determine if you are prepared adequately to address it.
  • Make sure you have a back-up heating source if the natural gas or electricity is out and develop a contingency plan.
  • Prioritize your preparedness needs and remember to take it one step at a time according to what you can budget.

Here is what the City of Taylorsville staff will be doing for the Shakeout:
A drop, cover and hold drill will start promptly at 10:15 a.m. on April 17.  Immediately following, the City Hall will be evacuated and an accounting of personnel will commence to make sure everyone is present.  Our police department, engineer and inspectors will do a mock inspection prior to re-entry.  Once the building “deemed safe”, staff will return to the building and set up our Emergency Operations Center (EOC). Communications with Salt Lake County Emergency Management will be established and staff will begin our scenario for the exercise until 4 p.m.  
At 4 p.m., neighborhood groups can get involved if they wish to. Any CERT (Community Emergency Response Team) members may gather their team together and meet at their designated staging sites if they would like to.  All Area Coordinators that have been appointed by the city Emergency Management Division will set up their assigned staging sites with their partner HAM operators.  Once that has been completed, they will establish communications with our city Communications Specialist.  Any drills the neighborhoods would like to do are encouraged.  Upon completion, if they would send a "runner" to their Area Staging site and report what kind of drill they did and how it went would be appreciated.  That information will be sent to the City EOC as part of testing the communications.  Area Coordinators and HAM specialists will stay at their sites up until 8 p.m.   
The City will not be participating with the Shakeout on the 18th and 19th but residents can continue to do any drills they would like to on their own.  
A map of the Staging Sites of the Area Coordinators can be found on our website under Emergency Preparedness and CERT.  Area D will stage, however, at the LDS Stake Property at 6250 South and 2200 West instead of at Calvin Smith Elementary for this drill.

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