John's Vashon Preparedness Blog

All of John Cornelison's blogs are listed on this page chronologically. Use the Calendar or Search functions in the right column to search through time, via keyword, or look at the parent blog page to view all authors' posts.

John's Recent Blogs

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Disaster news and links of interest for Vashonites
By John Cornelison on 12/14/2011 9:24 AM


imageThe fall 2011 CERT Newsletter is out and contains a nice overview of CERT activities happening around the country. These serve as a good introduction to the wide range of purposes CERT volunteers are capable of. There is an emphasis in this newsletter of college campus CERTs - including an impressive photo of the Pasadena Community College (PCC) CERT trailer.

imageCheck...
By John Cornelison on 12/11/2011 6:51 PM


A car accident snapped off the power pole at Dockton and Pt. Robinson roads last night about 6 PM. Unfortunately the accident curiously snapped the pole up about 20 feet high and took out the island’s primary electrical power feed. While most of island only experienced a 10 second outage, about 500 PSE customers had a couple hour service interruption. 1200 Maury Island people didn’t have power (and Comcast service) fully restored until about 3:30 PM today.

During the event Rick Frye wrote the following note to the Vashon-Maury Island Radio Club’s email group, which I thought a great reflection on the event:

And while I don’t know anything about the particulars in this case, I do know that sometimes – especially when a pole breaks – a lower voltage line can come into contact with a higher voltage line and this will cause the lower voltage line to become hyper-energized leading to problems along that line that might wipe out a...
By John Cornelison on 12/8/2011 8:43 AM


Graphic from IPCC's CBS notes that this year’s 12 disasters costing over 1 billion dollars each surpasses the number seen during all the 1980’s – even with inflation adjustments. In associated reports they note that the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change’s...
By John Cornelison on 12/1/2011 9:47 AM


VISDCommunityDinner(1Dec11)Here’s a reminder to attend the December 1st Community Dinner at the Vashon High School Common Room, from 5:30 to 7:30 PM.

This month’s theme will be energy conservation, emergency preparedness and how to access and use the wonderful resources on this island to help in the event of an emergency. PSE will be handing out Take Winter by Storm ice scrapers, CFL bulbs, and low...
By John Cornelison on 11/10/2011 8:19 AM


imageThere were serious issues that presented the first nationwide emergency alert from working uniformly across the county. Some folks reported 30 seconds of dead air, others garbled audio. Some folks instead heard Lady Gaga’s ‘Paparazzi’! It is good we had this test as it points out that there is lots of work to be done – likely in various state’s infrastructures.

More at:

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By John Cornelison on 11/8/2011 12:38 PM


CBS recently listed a number of sobering facts about earthquake insurance that anyone from a scesmicly active area - like those of us from the Salish Sea would do well to be familiar with. Most know it isn’t included in standard homeowner’s policies, but even with it beware of the large number of restrictions in comparison to fire or other policies.

The topics covered are:

Deductibles Personal possessions Exclusions Loss of use Uncovered losses don't count toward the deductible Cost of coverage Who suffers catastrophic claims Mitigating risks Read the article at www.cbsnews.com/8301-505144_162-57319955/earthquake-insurance-8-things-you-need-to-know/

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By John Cornelison on 11/8/2011 11:34 AM


Get Ready: Set Your Clocks, Check Your Stocks is the name of a new biannual campaign to encourage checking on your emergency preparedness kit of food, water, first-aid supplies, medications and food for pets. Do it when you set your clock forward or backward an hour. American Public Health Association is leading (or at least championing) this effort, as noted in this article: http://www.upi.com/Health_News/2011/11/07/Twice-a-year-Check-emergency-stockpile/UPI-85881320643709 The campaign web site has a number...
By John Cornelison on 11/3/2011 10:53 AM


CommunityDinner.111103The Fire District is sponsoring the community dinner at Vashon High School tonight. The school district puts on these dinners once a month to raise funds for the school’s lunch program.  A suggested donation is $10 per person, but come by, enjoy a dinner and support this wonderful program. 

November 3rd Community Dinner

Vashon High School Commons

5:30-7:00 pm

$10 Suggested Donation

Topics

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By John Cornelison on 11/3/2011 9:12 AM


imageJoin FEMA Tuesday, November 8th to learn how the recently released National Disaster Recovery Framework (NDRF) provides a more inclusive, collaborative and comprehensive approach to addressing disaster recovery issues and challenges. The NDRF defines how we will work together as a nation to best meet the disaster recovery needs of individuals, families, communities, and states.  The NDRF is based on the principle...
By John Cornelison on 10/31/2011 12:13 PM


imagePuyallup’s Emergency Management Department is hosting a free Emergency Preparedness Fair this Saturday at their fairgrounds. Learn to build an emergency kit, learn about their CERT, ARES & related citizen corps programs, fire safety and much more.

www.cityofpuyallup.org/emergency-management/emergency-preparedness-fair/

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By John Cornelison on 10/21/2011 11:31 AM


HAZUS-MH: Earthquake, Wind, FloodHazus is a nationally applicable standardized methodology that contains models for estimating potential losses from earthquakes, floods, and hurricanes. Hazus uses Geographic Information Systems (GIS) technology to estimate physical, economic, and social impacts of disasters.

HAZUS-MH is software developed by FEMA that analyzes risk from natural hazards in communities. Although Hazus-MH itself is free, it requires the users to have ArcGIS with ArcView license level.

Existing HAZUS-MH runs for Vashon (i.e. those for our 2005 Earthquake Study,...
By John Cornelison on 10/21/2011 10:37 AM


imageNOAA had already posted news that we were likely to have a wetter than average winter in the northwest. Now they’re also saying there is over a 33% chance it may be colder than average, according to their latest long range forecast...
By John Cornelison on 10/21/2011 9:56 AM


imageIn addition to helping maintain Vashon CERT’s generators at the local fire stations each month, Vashon’s Dennis Schroeder has been a volunteer at the Real Change newspaper for the past five years, as well as serving on its Board of Directors for a two-year term. For those who may  not know, Real Change is the street newspaper that is sold in Seattle and the surrounding areas by homeless and low-income people.

The mission statement...
By John Cornelison on 10/21/2011 8:11 AM


It is not too surprising that it would happen somewhere in California in any given day, but yesterday’s 2011 Great California ShakeOut earthquake drill was punctuated with a few minor quakes yesterday around the Berkeley area. No injuries and only minor damage was reported.

Some 1.3 million...
By John Cornelison on 10/18/2011 9:36 AM


imageIt appears that the ICS Task Books that help evaluators judge ICS performance (2007 versions are online at http://training.fema.gov/EMIWeb/IS/ICSResource/PositionChecklists.htm) have been newly revised in April 2011, and are now published as a draft docket...
By John Cornelison on 10/17/2011 8:31 PM


Digital_Surgeons_FEMA_Spending_InfographicThanks to King County’s Dave Nichols for spotting this infographic by the Digital Surgeons depicting where FEMA’s funds have gone this...
By John Cornelison on 10/17/2011 8:27 PM

KING 5 News reported today a swarm of earthquakes in recent weeks around Mount Rainier: nothing especially exciting, but an alert that it IS an active volcano!

Read the full story here. For the latest view of regional quakes, always visit www.pnsn.org/req2/.

By John Cornelison on 10/17/2011 5:46 PM


imageIf you appreciated my 14 March post that mentioned the ABC site showing before & after images of some tsunami scenes, you’ll likely also appreciate this somewhat similar set of photos from the Sacramento Bee that show 3 sequential images shot from the same perspective – of maybe a dozen different scenes. Thanks to Cathy Rogers & Jill Watson for alerting us to these.

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By John Cornelison on 10/15/2011 7:09 AM


Feeds into the Washington State's Emergency Alert System



Prepare. Plan. Stay Informed.

 

The first ever nationwide test of the Emergency Alert System will occur on Nov 9 at 2 pm ET and last for about 3 minutes, according to Damon Penn, of National...
By John Cornelison on 10/15/2011 4:57 AM


A posting to the northwest DStar email list reports that a new Amateur Radio organization is being formed in Tukwila that will help to foster volunteerism, offer radio and emergency management training and build a sense of community.

The purpose of the club is to:

Volunteer radio skills, equipment and experience to the Tukwila Office of Emergency Management to provide volunteer resources, that in turn will work with the Tukwila Fire and Police in a civilian capacity Train those interested in becoming licensed radio operators and help them achieve their radio licensing goals Build a sense of Community by hosting monthly club meetings to introduce club members to new technology, best practices, equipment discussions and anything...
By John Cornelison on 10/14/2011 8:27 AM


VIFR Recipe FormDo you want to see your name in print? 

Give Linda, Susan or Barbara your recipe(s) before the 21st  and your name and recipe(s) will be included in the  VIFR Cookbook.

Hope to have available for the holidays, if not VIFR will make up gift certificates.   If interested in purchasing a cookbook let us know and we can get an idea of how many to order.

To those that have already submitted recipes – Thank you!

Barbara, Linda and Susan

See my earlier post (at http://vashoneoc.org/Blogs/VashonPreparedness/tabid/164/EntryId/105/Submit-a-Recipe-to-Support-Vashon-Explorers.aspx) for a copy of the entry...
By John Cornelison on 10/13/2011 11:36 AM


Vashon Chamber of Commerce's Executive Director Debi Richards addresses an initial meeting of Vashon's Business NERO groupOver the last year Debi Richards, the Vashon Chamber of Commerce’s Executive Director has been thinking about how to encourage businesses to get better...
By John Cornelison on 10/13/2011 10:21 AM


VashonBePrepared's partners

On Saturday October 22, starting at 9:00am and running till 12:00 noon, VashonBePrepared is holding an introduction to all the various partners in the local disaster preparedness effort and how they serve when activated for an emergency. A number of the groups will be there at main fire station (either the Emergency Operations Center or Penny Farcy, depending on number of participants) so you can get more specifics on the organizations’ goals and style.

Expanding from the previous EOC 101 courses, there still will be a good introduction to the basics of our EOC operations.

Jan Milligan, VashonBePrepared’s Volunteer Coordinator is organizing the effort and would appreciate knowing who is coming to plan for space and refreshments!...
By John Cornelison on 10/12/2011 6:40 PM


imageThe following is from FEMA:

The Department of Homeland Security recently announced the release of the country's first-ever National Preparedness Goal. The goal is the first deliverable required under Presidential Policy Directive (PPD) 8: National Preparedness, which was released in April 2011. The goal sets the vision for nationwide preparedness and identifies the core capabilities and targets necessary to achieve preparedness across five mission areas laid out under PPD 8: prevention, protection, mitigation,...
By John Cornelison on 10/12/2011 2:26 PM


Formally accepting the 2011 King County Executive Award for Community Preparedness from Dow Constantine and Joe McDermott were VashonBePrepared President John Cornelison and VIFR Fire Chief Hank LipeThe residents of Vashon and all the volunteers and organizations under the VashonBePrepared banner were honored Friday, September 30th by King County Executive Dow Constantine and King County Councilmember Joe McDermott - the final day of National Preparedness Month. As described by the actual 2011 King County Executive Award for Community Preparedness, and by the official King County press release, the award was to the entire community and emphasized the many contributors to Vashon’s preparedness. The Carnation-Duvall Citizen Corps Council was likewise lauded with a similar award.

...
By John Cornelison on 10/12/2011 9:23 AM


According to 1st Alert, 79% of families have a fire escape plan, but 51% have never practiced it, and 29% have only done so once.

The National Fire Protection Association recommends practicing your emergency escape routes twice annually. Other fire safety organizations promote monthly drills – as a way to bolster reaction times during a real emergency.

This likely should also hold for other preparedness plans for Vashon families – and businesses.

A Red Cross recent survey...
By John Cornelison on 10/11/2011 9:36 AM


imageSeattle Chapter, American Red Cross, is Sponsoring an Amateur Radio General Class Licensing Course

The course meets on Monday nights starting October 24, 2011 at 6:30 PM and continues through November 21, 2011.

Class hours are generally from 6:30 PM to 9:30 PM.

The course is at the Seattle Red Cross, 1900 25th Ave., South, Seattle, WA 98144, room 130 (lower level).

The course is built to give you confidence in passing the licensing test and knowledge and...
By John Cornelison on 10/7/2011 4:17 PM


imageWhile last winter didn’t seem that cold (skiing was NOT as epic as I had hoped or the dramatic forecasts had predicted), it did have lots of rain and this year is likely to be colder and wetter than average also. According to the national Climate Prediction Center’s announcement yesterday, it looks like a wetter, but not necessarily colder winter...
By John Cornelison on 10/7/2011 3:48 PM


Thanks to Steve Allen for installing a new automatically activated alert system this afternoon at the North End Fire Station. The system has been improved gradually overtime and no longer relies on monthly volunteers swapping out manually charged batteries for instance. The new system is actually located inside the fire station and so has a trickle charger that will keep the batteries topped off.

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By John Cornelison on 10/7/2011 2:42 PM


ff_1276766.600x778On September 30th, King County Executive Dow Constantine presented the citizens of Vashon and the organizations that comprise VashonBePrepared with his 2011 Award for Community Preparedness as noted in the King County press release and my comments on...

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