Cindi Barker and Sharonn Meeks are two of the volunteers at the Fauntleroy Emergency Communications Hub (explained here), one of three hubs, along with Highland Park and Admiral, that are part of an earthquake drill this morning. It’s a followup to a May drill – meant to simulate what the hubs might deal with in the not-as-immediate aftermath of The Big One. The scenario given to volunteers is that it’s about 30 hours after a major quake hit the region, affecting power and transportation, and breaking or overloading major communications systems, so Community Hubs are up and running, and ham-radio teams are in action. Today’s participants are acting as if they are relieving the first group that’s been working since just after the quake, and have to deal with “a large amount of message traffic” – note the radio and the bulletin board in the photo. The volunteers will be attempting to relay those messages, among other parts of the drill. (This is the same one for which we put out a call for “actors.”) What can you do? Know where your nearest Emergency Communication Hub is – that’s where you would go to find out information and how to get help when the conventional ways of doing so have failed. Also, don’t just think of a disaster kit as “we’ll get around to it” – be ready now – weather disasters may be partly predictable, but earthquakes still aren’t. Find tips on the excellent, volunteer-created West Seattle Be Prepared website.
West Seattle, Washington