Grays Harbor County Emergency Management
Phone Number (360) 249-3911
Thursday, October 20, 2016
THE GREAT SHAKEOUT EARTHQUAKE EXERCISE IS TODAY AT 10:20 AM
Thursday October 20th, at 10:20 am, The Great Shakeout Earthquake Exercise will initiate. This continues to be the largest earthquake exercise ever conducted worldwide.
Please be aware that many government offices, businesses and all Grays Harbor County schools will be evacuating during the exercise. Use extreme caution as you drive throughout the county.
All AHAB Sirens will activate with the actual, full 3 minute siren along with a voice message announcing the test and then again following the siren. The All Hazard Weather Radios will only activate with the required weekly test at 10:20 am and only in coastal communities such as Grays Harbor County and Pacific County. Some weather radios will not activate because they do not receive weekly test messages. If you are not sure whether your All Hazard Weather Radio is functioning properly, push the radio button. You should hear the 24 hour weather forecast message. If you do not hear a voice transmission, you may need to reconfigure the radio or move it to another area.
Since most families are NOT together for this event, please consider discussing your family disaster plans over the weekend so all family members are fully aware what is expected from each person.
October 18, 2016
WHAT HAPPENS IF THERE ISN’T TIME TO WARN YOU?
The Importance of an All Hazard Weather Radio
One of the greatest fears of any emergency manager is not being able to warn the public about an event that is imminent – such as a tornado. The severe storm on Friday almost brought that fear to reality for me.
At 4:26 am Friday morning October 14, 2016, the National Weather Service in Portland, sent the first of four (4), Tornado Warning Messages for Pacific County, Washington and the first of 10 Tornado Warning Messages for Southern Washington and parts of Oregon.
This particular message was for areas around Ilwaco, but I began to think how many people didn’t receive the message because they were asleep and had no All Hazard Weather Radio to alert them of a possible impending disaster event?
The second message at 6:37 am Friday really frightened me. The Tornado Warning included Tokeland, WA which is just a short distance from our county line, close to the City of Westport and the community of Grayland. The warning provided a 20 minute parameter when a potential funnel cloud could impact the area.
How would we warn the public if the next message included our jurisdictions? We do not have tornado sirens and if we activated the All Hazard Alert Broadcast Sirens (AHAB’s) along the coast, it could prompt citizens to begin moving toward higher ground, (to escape a suspected Tsunami), exposing them to the wrath of the tornado without any protection from the winds and debris. Besides, the AHAB’s are for outdoor notification only. We have a robust notification system to call, text and e-mail citizens of an approaching hazard, but if they were sleeping, I doubt many would receive the text message or the e-mail message. Depending which jurisdictions were chosen to receive the warning message via phone call, there might not be time to complete the calls prior to a tornado impact.
According to a 2013 Survey conducted by Grays Harbor County Emergency Management, only 40% of our residents volunteered to sign up for the Grays Harbor County Emergency Notification System. The All Hazard Weather Radio, probably the fastest and most efficient notification device to warn of imminent danger, is only owned by 38% of our citizens. How do we alert the other 62% of our population of an approaching disaster?
An All Hazard Weather Radio is the fastest and most efficient way to receive imminent emergency and disaster messages. Every government office, school, local business and home should have one to alert all of the possibility of an impending disaster event such as tornado, flash flood, distant tsunami, severe winds and weather. They can be purchased at local hardware stores, Walmart or on-line for between $20.00 - $50.00 – a small price to protect your family, friends and pets.
To Sign up for the Grays harbor County Notification System, go to: http://www.co.grays-harbor.wa.us/info/DEM/EMailTWS.asp
SIGN UP FOR EMERGENCY NOTIFICATIONS ON SEVERE WEATHER, LOCAL EMERGENCY AND DISASTER INFORMATION FROM GRAYS HARBOR COUNTY EMERGENCY MANAGEMENT
The fall and winter severe storm season is nearly upon us. Stay informed about severe weather forecasts, flooding and possible wind damage specific to your community in Grays Harbor County as well as regional, state and worldwide disaster events by signing up for one or more of the various ways we provide information to citizens and visitors to our county.
We recommend all citizens sign up for the Grays Harbor County Notification System for emergency and disaster alerts from Grays Harbor County Emergency Management via phone call, text and e-mail. YOU MUST VOLUNTARILY SIGN UP FOR THESE ALERTS IN ORDER TO RECEIVE THEM.
The notices using the Grays Harbor County Notification System are ONLY sent when conditions warrant emergency citizen notification due to possible flooding, wind damage or other disaster events which could result in injury or damage to people, pets, livestock, homes and property.
Grays Harbor Emergency Management also offers an opportunity for you to obtain other information via e-mail, on a 2-3 day basis about world disaster events, impending storm events, citizen and community preparedness. (If filling out the Notification System registration form, just type in “SIGN ME UP” in the COMMENTS section of the form and we’ll add you to our regular e-mail list as well as the Grays Harbor County Notification List.)
THE LINK TO THE NOTIFICATION REGISTRATION PAGE IS:
•The quickest way to receive emergency and disaster information from Grays Harbor County Emergency Management is to follow us on Facebook and Twitter.
•Twitter at: https://twitter.com/ghcdem
•Facebook at: https://www.facebook.com/pages/Grays-Harbor-County-Emergency-Management/426601594068767
•You can follow the Grays Harbor County Emergency Management Website at: http://www.co.grays-harbor.wa.us/info/DEM/Index.asp
•You can also receive an informational e-mail from Emergency Management on a one to two day basis with information on world disaster events, new information on natural hazards and general preparedness issues. To be added to our e-mail list, send your name and e-mail address to: email@example.com
•All Grays Harbor County citizens are urged to obtain an All Hazard ALERT Weather Radio for immediate alerts for severe weather and disaster information.
•Remember, television usually DOES NOT broadcast the correct emergency information for your site specific location in Grays Harbor County.
•All local AM/FM radio stations will transmit the most up to date verified information from Grays Harbor Emergency Management.
UNDERSTANDING TSUNAMI HAZARDS
**Fact Sheets for Grays Harbor County**
SIGN UP for the Grays Harbor Emergency Notification System to receive Emergency & Disaster information on winter storms, earthquakes and flooding.
SIGN UP HERE !!!