CERT Program of Kirkland, WA

News

  • Friday, May 08, 2015 10:55 AM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    Summary

    While warm, sunny days are expected across King County this weekend, lakes, rivers and Puget Sound remain dangerously cold, and health and safety officials urge caution around open water.

    Story

    With temperatures expected to reach 80 degrees this weekend and the annual boating season under way, King County health and safety officials are urging everyone to be safe around open water.

    Springtime water temperatures are quite cold, and cold-water shock can quickly overwhelm an unprepared swimmer in rivers, lakes and Puget Sound.

    Warm weather early in the season raises concern for river managers and emergency responders, who note that higher river flows and lower water temperatures this time of year can be a dangerous combination for swimmers.

    “Take advantage of pools for safer swimming. If you do go on the river or lake, lifejackets should be standard equipment,” said Dr. Jeff Duchin, Interim Health Officer for Public Health – Seattle & King County.

    “I urge everyone to use caution when going into the water,” said King County Sheriff John Urquhart. “Wearing a lifejacket while having fun on the water should be second nature – like clicking your safety belt when getting into a car, or snapping on a helmet when going for a bike ride.”

    “Always wear a lifejacket. Rivers are dangerous year-round, but especially in the springtime due to cold water and faster flows,” said Christie True, Director of the King County Department of Natural Resources and Parks. “And it’s important to understand that river systems are constantly changing, with rocks and submerged trees shifting and presenting new hazards from year to year.”

    A King County study of recreational river use along the Cedar River in 2011 confirmed the widely held notion that summer recreation is largely determined by warmer temperatures.

    When temperatures are in the 70s, there are likely to be people floating on the river. When temperatures reach 80 degrees or higher, floating, swimming and other recreational river use along rivers increases dramatically.

    King County, Public Health – Seattle & King County, and the King County Sheriff’s Office encourage kayakers, boaters, rafters, swimmers and other river users to check conditions and scout rivers thoroughly for hazards before entering the water. Sometimes the best plan is to not enter the water.

    For details about river safety, visit www.kingcounty.gov/riversafety. For more information on water safety and drowning prevention, visit the King County Water Safety website, www.kingcounty.gov/healthservices/health/injury/water.

    Statistics

    • In 2014, Public Health – Seattle & King County found that 15 people died in preventable drowning incidents – and nine of them occurred in open water, such as rivers, lakes, ponds, or Puget Sound.
      Eight of the deaths could have been prevented with lifejacket use.
      Half of all deaths involved alcohol and/or other drugs.
      Drowning is the second leading cause of unintentional injury death for children and teens age 1-17 in Washington

    Note: this is a repost of a press release issued by King County Natural Resources and Parks.  http://www.kingcounty.gov/depts/dnrp/newsroom/newsreleases/2015/May/07-water-safety.aspx

  • Wednesday, May 06, 2015 9:45 AM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    Press release from ARRL:

    (Seattle)  Saturday May 9th, 5:00 p.m. to 10:00 pm, The City of Seattle
    will conduct a disaster training exercise for volunteers based on the
    scenario that a 9.3 scale subduction zone earthquake has hit Seattle
    causing major infrastructure damage destroying bridges across Lake
    Washington, cutting power as well as disrupting cell phones and
    Internet service. The incident is complicated by a major storm that
    follows at night soon after the earthquake. The name of the training
    exercise is A Dark and Stormy Night.

    The drill will exercise the use of amateur radio to relay emergency
    messages when conventional systems are damaged or overloaded.  “This
    will be a great opportunity for volunteer amateur radio operators to
    train side-by-side with people in the neighborhoods who have organized
    Community Emergency Hubs for the purpose of sharing resources and
    helping each other in response to a disaster” said Assistant Director
    of Seattle ACS and exercise planner Jessica Coleman, “information
    needs to flow from city officials to the neighborhoods, and from the
    neighborhoods to the city.”

    This exercise titled A Dark and Stormy Night (Hashtag:
    #Darkandstormy2015) will test operations, procedures and equipment, and
    offer opportunities to learn as well as to get to know fellow
    volunteers.  Every May, Seattle ACS works together with Seattle’s
    Neighborhood Hubs to plan and conduct an exercise.  The hubs are
    located in various neighborhoods and are a gathering point for
    information and sharing of supplies and other resources.  See more
    about the hubs at http://seattleemergencyhubs.org/.   Practicing the
    exchange of critical information between the community and the Seattle
    Emergency Operations Center (EOC) is a primary objective of this drill.
     Coleman says, “The information can be where shelters are set up, or
    which neighborhoods need drinking water.  The exercise is called A Dark
    and Stormy Night because in this year’s scenario, the weather is also
    bad, and we are working at night.”

    “Ham Radio Operators,” as they are called, are licensed by the
    Federal Communications Commission (FCC) as Amateur Radio operators.
    Amateur radio has been around for over 100 years, and there are 700,000
    licensed hams in the United States, and many more across the world.
    Hams have a tradition of helping out in emergencies and disasters.
    Most of volunteers participating in this exercise are members of
    Seattle ACS or their neighborhood hub, and are ham radio operators.
    “In a disaster on this scale, ham radio may be one of the only means
    of communications that works,” said Coleman.  Hams use their own
    equipment, which are battery powered and can be easily carried and set
    up anywhere.  Coleman adds, “The reason we have exercises like this
    is to test the equipment, and to test our skills.  We have monthly
    training sessions to get our over 130 volunteers prepared, up to speed
    and ready for an exercise, or for emergencies.”  For the Dark and
    Stormy Night exercise, planners have developed a realistic scenario to
    use as the basis of the drill.  This scenario starts two days after the
    initial quake and includes aftershocks, and bad weather.

    The Seattle Hubs are a collection of volunteers in a neighborhood that
    collectively and individually prepare for emergencies and disasters.
    In a disaster, the hub sites will:
    •    Collect information on local situations, needs, and resources.
    •    Relay information between hub sites, and to and from the City of
           Seattle’s Emergency Operations Center (EOC).
    •    Assist in allocation of resources provided by neighborhood
           residents to needs of neighborhood residents.

    Hubs participating in A Dark and Stormy Night exercise include:
    Admiral -Hiawatha Playfield, Ballard Commons, Broadview at Grace
    Lutheran, Ercolini Park, Kirke Park, Lake City at Fred Meyer parking
    lot, Loyal Heights Playfield, Shilshole Marina, West Magnolia Playfield
    (subject to change).  Volunteers at the hub not involved in
    communications will be training on-the-job, and/or working as
    “community actors” – playing the role of someone in need.

    Both the Seattle Hubs and the Seattle ACS are 100% volunteers.  Seattle
    ACS is a program of the Seattle Office of Emergency Management (Seattle
    OEM) http://www.seattle.gov/emergency-management.  Seattle OEM is
    administratively within the Seattle Police Department, and located at
    the Emergency Operations Center (EOC) at 105 5th Ave S in downtown
    Seattle.

    Address comments/questions to:

    Spokesperson/PIO:  206 755-4541 Curt Black West Seattle Sector -
    American Legion Post 160.   wr5j@arrl.net

    ACS Director/Spokesperson:  206 510-7118 Mark Sheppard Seattle
    Emergency Operations Center 105 5th Ave S mark.sheppard@seattle.gov
    (call to gain entry)

    Monte, AF7PQ

    --------------------------------------------------------------------
    ARRL Western Washington Section
    Section Manager: Monte L Simpson, AF7PQ
    af7pq@arrl.org
    -------------------------------------------------------------------- 

  • Friday, April 10, 2015 5:01 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    Registration for the 2015 Mass Care Regional Forum is now open.

    2015 Mass Care Regional Forum Survey

    Save the date and fill out this survey (see link above) to register for the free King County Mass Care Regional Forum on Thursday, May 14, from 9 am to 12 pm, with an optional Mass Care 101 session at 8 am.

    Last year you told us you wanted more operational information and we listened! This year’s event focuses on the practical aspects of sheltering pets and working with vulnerable populations and includes panel discussions with a veterinarian, pet shelter experts the Disability Advisory Group and others as well as a session on operating a pet shelter.

    This event is for organizations involved in Mass Care (shelter, feeding, distribution of emergency supplies, etc.) for disasters in King County. It is designed to bring together government, non-profit, faith, and other partners who work together to help people in disasters. This is a time to network, learn of planning efforts, emerging issues, resources, and channels for receiving and offering assistance during a disaster.

    The forum will be held at the Seattle Chapter of the American Red Cross located at 1900 25th Ave S. Seattle. It is being hosted by the King County Mass Care Workgroup, a sub-committee of the King County Emergency Management Advisory Committee. A full agenda will be sent out prior to the event.

    Please note that we will be offering a Mass Care 101 session from 8:00 am to 8:50 am, prior to the forum. This session is designed for those who are new to the Mass Care arena and need a basic overview of who is responsible for which activities.

    Please note, my email address has changed to breth@issaquahwa.gov.  Please update your records.

    Bret Heath
    City of Issaquah
    Director
    Public Works Operations
    Emergency Management
    425-837-3475 - Office
    425-837-3479 - Fax
    KD7SAQ

  • Wednesday, April 01, 2015 8:50 AM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    Borrowing the name from the old folk story about sharing resources, Stone Soup Initiative is the name the Kirkland Office of Emergency Management is using for efforts to establish Generated Facilities in neighborhoods around Kirkland.

    In mid-2014, the City of Kirkland asked if Inglewood Presbyterian Church (IPC) would be willing to house its new trailer-mounted backup power generator and work with the City to leverage our building during disaster response. Click here to read more: Stone Soup 

     
  • Thursday, March 19, 2015 11:57 AM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    The latest FEMA CERT E-Brief is published!  Click here to read about how CERTs have helped their communities. 

    Articles include:

    Galveston CERT Responds to Fifth Largest Oil Spill in US History

    Nashua CERT Responds to Thanksgiving Day Activation

    New Lenox CERT Helps Village of New Lenox Become a "Safe Community"

    CERT Responds to Deadly Building Collapse in New York City

     

  • Friday, March 13, 2015 2:32 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    Reposted from FEMA Individual and Community Preparedness e-Brief:

    With spring comes the expectation of warmer weather and longer days. But it may also bring heavy rains and rapid snowmelt that can increase your risk for one of the most common disasters in the United States – floods.  Properly preparing for this hazard can keep your family safe, minimize potential damage and speed up recovery efforts.

    While everyone is at risk for flooding, many remain financially unprotected. One of the best ways to protect your home is by purchasing flood insurance because flood losses are not typically covered under homeowner’s insurance policies. Keep in mind that there is a 30-day waiting period before flood coverage takes effect, so the time to purchase is now!

    In addition to flood insurance, follow these steps to safeguard your home and possessions:

    • Create a personal flood file containing information about all your possessions, and keep it in a secure place such as a waterproof container or safe deposit box;
    • Keep a written and visual record of all major household items and valuables;
    • Elevate the furnace, water heater, and electric panel if you live in an area that has a high flood risk; and
    • Consider installing “check valves” to prevent flood water from backing up in the drains of your home.

    No matter the source, a flood does not have to be a catastrophic event to be costly. Just a few inches of water can cause thousands of dollars in damage. Check out this interactive Cost of Flooding tool from FloodSmart.gov to measure the financial impact a flood could have on your home.  

  • Friday, January 09, 2015 4:57 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)
    Author:  Jessica Stapf

     

    The New Year is upon us and with that comes the inevitable, hard-to-answer question: "What's your New Year's resolution?" Many will respond with something along the lines of "I'd like to give more time to my community" or "I'd like to do some volunteering."

    If you are one of those who have placed this on their to-do list, you may want to consider linking up with your local Community Emergency Response Team.

    These teams are designed to get communities more involved in disaster response and recovery:

    Nearly half (49%) of these teams have volunteer managers. These volunteers work tirelessly to make sure that their communities have the resources they need to complete the team’s goals and mission. These teams are typically sponsored by fire departments, police departments, or other local emergency management agencies that provide training to and manage volunteers.

    These teams often do unique things to give back. One team based out of Shiawassee County, Michigan worked with their local Humane Society to ensure the animals (and their humans!) at a shelter had the supplies they need in cases of severe weather. The team’s work helped ensure that the Humane Society volunteers were able to focus on the animals they care for.

    TJ Clark of the Shiawassee County Emergency Management Division noted:

    The [Community Emergency Response Team]’s role is more than making sure the shelters are prepared for pets; it’s about getting the whole community back on its feet [and] functioning as safely and as quickly as possible.

    You can read more about this exciting partnership and others pertaining to CERTs and animals.

    There are over 2,380 CERT programs across the United States. Learn more about Community Emergency Response Teams and find your local team by searching for your ZIP Code. If there is not a team in your area and you’re interested in creating one, get in touch with your State’s Point of Contact. Giving your time to a Community Emergency Response Team in your area is a great way to complete your New Year’s resolution and help make your community more prepared and resilient.

    Last Updated: 
    01/09/2015 - 17:14
       
  • Tuesday, November 18, 2014 3:26 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    Contact: Lieutenant Nick Seibert
    Kirkland Police Department
    nseibert@kirklandwa.gov
    425-587-3445


    KIRKLAND, Wash. – The Kirkland Police Department now offers an ongoing program that allows citizens to dispose of unwanted prescription drugs into a secured receptacle in the Police Department lobby, located at the Kirkland Justice Center, 11750 NE 118th Street. Citizens can anonymously dispose of their unused prescription drugs Monday through Friday between 7 a.m. and 5 p.m.  Items not accepted include sharps, weapons, and hazardous waste.  Prescription containers are permitted, however, the public is encouraged to place pills in sealable plastic bags prior to disposal.  The prescription drugs are later incinerated in a facility approved by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). 

    Over the past several years, the Kirkland Police Department partnered with the U.S. Drug Enforcement Agency (DEA) and the “Drug Take Back” program to help reduce the diversion, misuse, and abuse of prescription drugs.  The DEA program ended in September 2014.  

    According to the DEA, rates of prescription drug abuse in the U.S. are alarmingly high, as are the number of accidental poisonings and overdoses due to these drugs.  Studies show that a majority of abused prescription drugs are obtained from family and friends, including from the home medicine cabinet. In addition, the usual methods for disposing of unused medicines undefined flushing them down the toilet or throwing them in the trash undefined pose potential safety and health hazards.

    For more information about the drug take back please contact Lieutenant Nick Seibert, Kirkland Police Department at 425-587-3445 or nseibert@kirklandwa.gov
    ### 

    (reposted from City of Kirkland press release) 

  • Friday, November 14, 2014 10:48 AM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    Contact: Pattijean Hooper, Ph.D., Emergency Manager
    Kirkland Office of Emergency Management
    Email: pjhooper@kirklandwa.gov
    Phone: 425-587-3630

    KIRKLAND, Wash. – The City of Kirkland’s Office of Emergency Management (OEM) is now on Facebook and Twitter: www.facebook.com/kirklandOEM and @OEMKirkland on Twitter.  Currently, both sites provide emergency preparedness information and resources. During major disasters and emergencies, city information will be posted and regional information will be shared on these social media channels.  To officially announce the channels’ launch, the OEM decorated the Cow and Coyote statue on Central Way in downtown and is hosting a T-shirt winning contest. Participants need to creatively respond to “What should the Cow and Coyote put in their emergency kit?” by tweeting @OEMKirkland or commenting on the Facebook post.  OEM team members will announce the winners on Monday November 17, 2014.

    The OEM aims to create a link between the community and the OEM by raising awareness of emergency management and by providing useful links and information on how to prepare the whole community for all hazards. Thus, the Kirkland community and its neighbors are highly encouraged to ‘like’ and ‘follow’ both social media channels.

    According to the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) “Increasingly the public is turning to social media technologies to obtain up-to-date information during emergencies and to share data about the disaster in the form of geo data, text, pictures, video, or a combination of these media.”

    “In Kirkland, social media is just one more way to reach out to the whole community. It is a great way to have conversations with people who actively use Twitter and Facebook. It is important to be engaged in as many forms of community communication as we can,” notes Pattijean Hooper, the City’s Emergency Manager.

    The two social media channels feature emergency preparedness-related memes and popular hashtags or trends, such as #TuesdayTrivia, #WednesdayWisdom and #ThrowbackThursday.

    For more information, contact Dr. Pattijean Hooper, Emergency Manager, at pjhooper@kirklandwa.gov or at 425-587-3630.

    About Kirkland’s Office of Emergency Management:
    The City of Kirkland's Office of Emergency Management works in partnership with the community to provide useful and universally accessible means of readiness, response and recovery for all hazards. Please visit www.kirklandwa.gov/kirklandOEM. 

  • Friday, October 31, 2014 8:52 AM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

     SKYWARN  WEATHER  SPOTTER TRAINING  ANNOUNCEMENT

     Site:   Redmond Public Safety Bldg - Redmond, WA (8701 160th Ave NE)

     Date: Wednesday, November 12, 2014  Time: 6:30 – 9:00 PM

     RSVP: Janeen Olson, Redmond Police Dept.
               (425) 556-2251 or email: jrolson@redmond.gov

    The National Weather Service will train new and veteran spotters, including interested citizens, amateur radio, CERT, citizen corps, and law enforcement staff, on how to look for and report significant weather events.  Training includes video demonstrations.  Spotters are needed, particularly in rural parts of King County, as well as those who have weather instrumentation, such as an anemometer.

    If planning to attend this spotter training session, please RSVP so an appropriate number of handout materials can be on hand.  Class capacity is 60, so sign up early! We look forward to seeing you at this or other Skywarn Weather Spotter training sessions, and receiving your hazardous weather reports. 

     

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