Disaster preparation program updating for 2010
Presentation aims to spread awareness
Are you prepared for an emergency?
If not, there’s a group of citizen volunteers who will do their best to make sure locals are as prepared as possible in the event of a natural disaster. For Del Mar, the group focuses most on fires, earthquakes and flooding. The chapter in Solana Beach, which is somewhat protected from floods due to its bluff-top location, emphasizes preparation for home fires, wildfires and earthquakes.
The Del Mar program, made up of Community Emergency Response Team, or CERT, members, was started four years ago by Del Mar resident Carol Kerridge. She said the goal was to promote neighborhood cohesiveness through disaster preparedness education.
“We wanted to go to all the neighborhoods that we could in Del Mar,” she said, adding that the group has organized meetings in 42 parts of the smallest city in San Diego County. “The last goal is that we wanted to make it so that other towns and villages could use it and they could adapt it to their towns.”
And that is exactly what happened.
There are now “Are You Ready” organizations in San Diego, Linda Vista and Encinitas, to name a few. The program’s one-hour PowerPoint presentation has been translated into several languages. Karriage said the Linda Vista group offers the presentation in Vietnamese. Students at Torrey Pines High School are currently translating the curriculum into Spanish for residents of Eden Gardens.
Solana Beach’s group, started in 2007, operates by visiting organizations instead of neighborhoods.
Presenter Linette Page said the goal is to educate 10 percent of Solana Beach, or 1,350 people. She said many requests came in after the 2007 wildfires. Page also said there is information on what to do in the case of a nuclear accident at San Onofre, and added most recently, in the case of a pandemic flu.
Each program is adaptable and different, depending on the appropriate disaster threats an area faces. Karriage said she is currently updating Del Mar’s version for 2010.
The free one-hour “Are You Ready” presentation is free of charge, and starter “disaster kits” are available for $20.
For more information on the Del Mar chapter, call Carol Kerridge at (619) 508-6847 or e-mail her at email@example.com. For the Solana Beach organization, call the city’s CERT hotline at (858) 720-4412 or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org.
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