City-Wide Emergency Communication Hub Field Exercise

Message from your Lake City Emergency Hub Team:

Lake City  Hub, Fred Meyer south parking lot, 13000 Lake City Way NE

Please join the Lake City Hub Team at the 2018 City-Wide Emergency Communication Hub Field Exercise this coming Saturday, April 28, 9-11:30 am at Lake City Fred Meyer in the SE corner of the lower parking. This exercise is a total failure of the Western WA power grid—cause unknown and resolution time not estimated.

We really need you to volunteer as a Hub Team member or to act out brief scripts of people (1) having information to share (for example, The ABC Store on Lake City Way is offering generator power to people needing to charge medical equipment); (2) needing something (for example, What pharmacies are open to fill my Dad’s insulin prescription?), and/or (3) offering a resource (for example, I can stay to help with Japanese interpretation). Those scripts will help us practice meeting local needs and matching them with local resources. Or simply stop by to learn about the Hub and some strategies for emergency preparedness—how-to build an emergency kit, how-to access and purify water, how-to manage sanitation, and how (and when) to control utilities.

Below is a forwarded newsletter from Hub Cap Cindi Barker explaining what is a field exercise (aka, drill) and why we do it. Please note that the new Victory Heights Hub led by Ann Forrest is also activating for the field exercise. The location is in the newsletter.

Please read on—and on behalf of the Lake City Hub Team, we hope to see you next Saturday morning between 9 and 11:30 am.

Seattle Emergency Communications Hubs

“It’s a lot of work to do a hub exercise, getting out the field and practicing for a disaster.  There’s time spent creating the scenario and exercise design itself, and there’s a huge investment of people time and energy on the day of the exercise.  Why do we bother?

Well, because we think muscle memory is an important thing, and that we will only get better by trying what we think will be effective and then adjusting for what the practice shows us.

Second, it lets you help us and “see” what the neighborhoods might be facing in the event of a major disaster.  It’s amazing what we don’t know about our city’s infrastructure, but if you come to the exercise to be a “citizen actor”, you’ll get a first hand look at what we have learned.  And not just our city services, but also the impact to you because businesses might not be able to operate as normal.  Muscle memory is just as important for you. When you think about what you would do if things were not normal, what would you do instead?  Resilient thinking is the key here.  See the Office of Emergency Management Book of the Month Club event below to learn more on this topic.

For our field exercise, while each hub is a little different, we know our key mission is to help communicate information to our communities and to facilitate the sharing of needs and resources. We all have basically the same concept of how we would set up, collect and display that information, but it takes a field exercise to reveal realities. 
How much tape will it take to keep paper forms from blowing away – and that will rocks make good paperweights.  What happens when there’s too much information, how can it be consolidated but still helpful?  What happens if 500 people show up at your hub, or more…?  Actually, we don’t know the answer to that question, as to date our practices have been pretty small in scale. 

That’s where your help is so essential.  If a hub has only have a few “citizen actors” for the drill, in some ways that’s nice, especially for hubs doing their first exercise; you have time to walk through things at a slower pace and talk about it as you go.  But we’ve never gotten to a point where a hub is flooded with information, offers of help and requests; and someday that would be nice to test out.  So if you can help us, we’d really like to approach a disaster scale level in our exercises.  Otherwise we might not learn the lessons we need to before a disaster actually happens.

This year we will have a simulated full city power extended power outage to deal with.  This will be a joint exercise with the Hubs and the Seattle Auxiliary Communication Service, the city’s Ham volunteer team.”

Participating Hubs 2018
North Seattle
Lake City  Hub, Fred Meyer south parking lot, 13000 Lake City Way NE
Broadview Lutheran Memorial Church Hub, 13047 Greenwood Ave N
Victory Heights Park Hub, 1737 NE 106th St
Kirke Park Hub, 7028 9th Ave NW

Central Seattle
Magnolia Playfield Hub, 32nd Ave W & W Smith St  2550 34th Ave W
Madison Park  Hub (radio station only), 42nd Ave E & E Howe St
Belltown  Hub at Olympic Sculpture Park, 2901 Western Ave

South Seattle
Pigeon Point Hub, 20th Ave SW & SW Genesee St
High Point Hub at Neighborhood House, 6400 Sylvan Way SW
Fauntleroy United Church of Christ Hub, 9140 California Ave SW
Beacon United Methodist Church Hub, 7301 Beacon Ave S.