Emergency Communications HUB Drill Connects Victory Heights With City

On Saturday July 29th, the new Victory Heights emergency communications HUB did its first drill in conjunction with a city-wide event. Tables were set up and volunteers (including a local scout troupe) held different positions or played out various scenarios using scripts. Organized by Victory Heights Community Council President Ann Forrest, various staff were given color-coded caps so they could easily be identified: greeters, person reunions, information, medical, and information posting.  The only resource a HUB has is information but in an emergency situation that can mean a lot when it comes to finding out who has what resources or where the greatest need is.

Local ham radio operators were also set up to allow our HUB to communicate with others nearby in Lake City, Meadowbrook and Maple Leaf.  They could also receive messages from the city’s “central command” downtown that would broadcast general information messages every 30 minutes to update HUBs around the city.

Over two dozens people participated in the drill, a great turn-out for our neighborhood (by contrast, the central part of the city including the Central District and Beacon Hill doesn’t even have any HUBs). Drills will continue to be held in the coming months. They are fun to participate in and extremely useful training should that day come when we need an emergency communication HUB in case of a natural disaster.

Great ShakeOut Earthquake Drill Thursday Morning

Tomorrow, Thursday, October 17th, people all over the world will be participating in the Great ShakeOut Earthquake Drill. Locally it will “occur” at 10:17 AM. Washington State has also gotten into the act, encouraging individuals or families that register for the Great Washington ShakeOut today may be eligible to win a home earthquake retrofit worth $10,000!

Everyone, everywhere, should know how to protect themselves in an earthquake. Great ShakeOut Earthquake Drills are an annual opportunity for people in homes, schools, and organizations to practice what to do during earthquakes, and to improve preparedness.

Do you have an earthquake plan? Know how to turn off your gas or electricity? Have emergency supplies?

This Saturday, the Seattle Community Emergency Hubs will be holding a Fall Summit from 9 AM to noon at the Seattle Emergency Operations Center, 105 5th Avenue S., Suite 300. You can RSVP to Ashley.Hill@redcross.org.

There are also a number of Community Skills Training classes available in different parts of the city, see the schedule at the City’s SNAP website.

And residents of Victory Heights may soon get a visit from an emergency preparedness block captain soon. These are folks from your street going from neighbor to neighbor to let them know about disaster planning, and organizing classes with city representatives on basic preparedness training (takes only an hour!).