March 23 through 29 is National Tsunami Preparedness Week. On March 10th, Seal Beach Mayor Ellery Deaton issued a proclamation declaring this week “National Tsunami Preparedness Week” to recognize and encourage public participation in raising awareness about the dangers posed by tsunamis.
The City of Seal Beach. in cooperation with the State of California, Office of Emergency Services and the Orange County Emergency Management Division will, take an active role in promoting public education and awareness about tsunami preparedness.
Thursday, March 27, is the 50th Anniversary of the Great Alaska Earthquake and Tsunami. To bring awareness to the danger posed by tsunamis the State of California is encouraging all affected cities to participate in a “Tsunami WalkOut.” This is a statewide initiative as part of a tsunami preparedness drill.
The Seal Beach Police Department will participate in a “Tsunami WalkOut” exercise. This exercise will have a group of volunteers from the Community Emergency Response Team and the Volunteers in Police Services walk from a tsunami danger zone to a tsunami safe zone. Experts recommend that people evacuate by foot when a tsunami warning is issued. This reduces the chance of evacuees getting stuck in traffic if they try to leave by car. “Tsunami WalkOut” is a phrase meant to represent a tsunami evacuation drill; similar to the term “ShakeOut” for the earthquake preparedness campaign.
The objective of the exercise is to raise public awareness regarding tsunami preparedness by participating in the state-wide initiative and identify the tsunami evacuation route through a “real-world” exercise that will highlight the desired action in the event of a real tsunami Warning. Local civic and government leaders and dignitaries will be invited to lead the “Tsunami WalkOut.”
Tsunami Ready Community
The City of Seal Beach is a Tsunami Ready Community. This is a national certification issued by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration and the National Weather Service. To be recognized as a Tsunami Ready Community there are a variety of criteria that must be met. They are;
• Establish a 24-hour warning point and emergency operations center.
• Have more than one way to receive tsunami warnings and alert the public.
• Promote public readiness through community education and distribution of information.
• Develop a formal tsunami plan, which includes holding emergency exercises.
• Comply with TsunamiReady guidelines
(Source: National Weather Service)
• The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s Tsunami Website
• Tsunami Education for Kids
• California Geological Survey – Tsunami Web Site
• FEMA Are You Ready: Tsunamis
For more information, contact:
Cpl. Michael Henderson, emergency services coordinator, SBPD, 911 Seal Beach Blvd., Seal Beach, CA 90740. Phone: (562) 799-4100 X-1145. Email: firstname.lastname@example.org.
Sgt. Phil Gonshak is the public information officer for the Seal Beach Police Department.