County emergency planners use Japan disaster as reminder to prepare
March 11, 2011
NEW — 11 a.m. March 11, 2011
King County emergency managers continue to monitor the Japan tsunami, though the Office of Emergency Management does not expect the disaster to significantly impact the area.
The office directed people to check the American Red Cross Safe and Well Program or call the U.S. Department of State at 888-407-4747 or 202-647-5225 for information about relatives impacted by the earthquake and the tsunami.
Following the magnitude-8.9 earthquake, the Pacific Tsunami Warning Center issued alerts for the U.S. West Coast, and around 8:45 a.m., a small wave — about 4.5 inches and smaller than high tide — reached the Seattle waterfront.
“Our thoughts go out to all those affected by this disaster,” County Executive Dow Constantine said in a statement. “While the tsunami didn’t affect King County, our Office of Emergency Management has been on top of developments and coordinating with our partners throughout the region.”
Though the county escaped harm in the ongoing disaster, the tragedy in Japan serves as a reminder to prepare now for emergencies.
The state Emergency Management Division offers tips:
- Review disaster plans and preparedness procedures in your household.
- Check on neighbors, especially the elderly, and review the disaster plan with them.
- Listen to local media and monitor the Web in emergencies, and be ready to follow instructions.
The county Office of Emergency Management offers information for other disasters.
“This tragedy overseas reminds us that our region is also at high risk from natural disasters,” Constantine said. “The time to prepare is before emergency strikes.”
Do you know somebody impacted by the earthquake and tsunami?
The Issaquah Press wants to connect with Issaquah and Eastside residents with links to the Japan earthquake and tsunami, as well as relief groups, nonprofits and faith-based groups, and other organizations involved in disaster response.
Readers with family and friends in Japan — as well as on the Washington coast, Hawaii and other affected areas — and organizations working to alleviate suffering in the aftermath of the devastating earthquake, can contact Editor Kathleen R. Merrill at firstname.lastname@example.org.