Ready, set, drill!
Sirens will be heard intermittently on Tuesday evening May 5, a reminder to participate in a community-wide tsunami evacuation drill from 6 to 8 pm based on a mock scenario of an 8.0 earthquake in Alaska, with anticipated (mock) 4-meter tsunami waves and 8-metre run-up waves.
The Fire Hall siren will sound at approximately 6 pm to notify residents that the exercise is starting and will be tested intermittently until 8 pm.
First Responders – Fire, Police and Search and Rescue – will conduct mock evacuations for homes located in low lying areas (less than 20 metres in elevation).
Ucluelet’s Emergency Social Services (ESS) team will activate a Reception Centre at the Secondary School Band Room. Please ensure you register your family at the Reception Centre.
The Emergency Committee will activate an Emergency Operation Centre (EOC) at the Fire Hall.
Emergency preparedness information will be provided at the Reception Centre.
â€œPlease practice your family’s emergency plan and evacuate with your emergency grab-and-go kits to Ucluelet’s main Community Safe Zone, the Ucluelet Secondary School (1450 Peninsula Rd.) between 6 pm and 8 pm. Residents and visitors that are not located in low-lying areas or the tsunami inundation zone are still asked to participate in the mock emergency evacuation,â€ said Karla Robison, Uclueletâ€™s environmental and emergency service manager.
â€œRemember, an emergency event can happen anywhere and at any time of the day, so it’s important to practice the drill.â€
For residents that choose to practice evacuating to high ground closer to their residence, emergency personnel will be at each of Ucluelet’s Community Safe Zones to greet you and provide emergency preparedness information.
â€œThis is an important evacuation exercise to practice with your family in preparation for the â€˜Big Oneâ€™ – a magnitude 9.0 subduction Cascadia Subduction Zone event.
â€œIn this situation, the ground will shake for approximately 2 to 5 minutes. Once the shaking stops, you will have approximately 20 minutes to evacuate to high ground (at least 20 meters)… Ucluelet’s tsunami evacuation motto is 20 Metres in 20 Minutes,â€ Robison said.
The â€˜mock wavesâ€™ the scenario is based on would reach the shores of Ucluelet at approximately 10 pm.
Each year the District of Ucluelet conducts a full-scale community evacuation drill. A full-scale exercise validates and evaluates multiple functions and multiple sites. The focus is to have players at multiply sites apply plans, policies, procedures, and training in response to a large-scale mock emergency event. These exercises involve actual movement of messages, personnel, equipment, and are highly realistic, Robison said.
â€œAn emergency situation can occur anywhere and anytime… This is why emergency preparation is a shared responsibility and it’s up to every Canadian to learn what to do before, during, and after an emergency situation,â€ she said.
There is also a guest speaker event on Wednesday at the UCC from 7 to 8 pm and a BBQ/Open House at the Fire Hall on Saturday from 11 am to 2 pm.
For more information about EP Week and the evacuation drill, please visit http://ucluelet.ca/â€¦/emergency-â€¦/emergency-preparedness-week. Also check out details about Ucluelet’s Community Safe Zone locations, emergency preparedness tips, etc.