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"Disaster Masters" teach residents at Southeast clinics

by: DAVID F. ASHTON - Woodstock NET volunteer Virginia Petersen shows SMILE Board member Bob Burkholder some of the supplies to keep on hand in preparation for a disaster.Are you and your family ready to survive, during a large-scale disaster?

That’s the question being asked – and for which solutions are being provided – by volunteers, currently presenting the “Get Ready for Anything” series of workshops in Inner Southeast Portland.

A major slippage of the Cascadia subduction zone – an event experts say is now “overdue” – could cause large-scale earthquake damage throughout the city, pointed out series organizer Liz Bryant.

“An earthquake can happen at any time. But, because we don't have a history within living memory of such major earthquakes in the area, most people have a low level of preparedness and awareness of what is needed to survive,” Bryant said.

The Neighborhood Emergency Teams (NET) are sponsoring the series that continues through May, with the help of co-sponsors including Southeast Uplift, and the SMILE, Brentwood-Darlington, Mt Scott-Arleta, and Woodstock neighborhood associations.

“NET is expanding our outreach,” Bryant told THE BEE. “So, we’re here, not only to help our families and our neighbors be prepared for when a disaster occurs – but also to get the word out about why we should all be prepared for any hazards that may occur in our area.”

About 25 NET volunteers, as first-responders, are putting on the workshops.

Alex Roy from the American Red Cross Oregon Trail Chapter was one of the speakers at the April 14 workshop held at Moreland Presbyterian Church in Westmoreland. It was entitled, “Make a Plan; Build a Kit”.

“We used to talk about preparing a ‘72 hour’ kit,” Roy said. “Now, we’re asking people and families to focus on making a two-week kit, increasing their level preparedness.”

What to put in the kit:

· Water – 1 gallon per person per day, for consuming and hygiene purposes.

· Food – Stock up just a little bit extra every time you go shopping – these should be non-perishable items.

· First aid kit – You should know what's in it and know what to do with it.

· Prescription medications – It's good to have a least a two-week supply on hand; rotate them as they expire.

· House cleanup items – Extra garbage bags, work gloves, work boots, big tarps or those cheap plastic sheeting. The tarps and sheeting are because Windows might be broken, and you might need to secure your home in the wintertime

· Children and pet needs – Having games in your kit would be good; and have food and treats for your pets

Another workshop, entitled “Helping Friends and Neighbors get Prepared”, will be presented on Tuesday, May 13, 6:30 to 9:30 pm, at SMILE Station, 8210 S.E. 13th Avenue, a block south of Tacoma Street. It will be repeated on Tuesday, May 20, at same hours, at Reedwood Friends Church, 2901 S.E. Steele Street.

The last workshop in the series, “Secure Your Home against Disaster”, takes place on Saturday, May 31, 2 until 4:30 pm, at Trinity United Methodist Church, 3915 S.E. Steele Street in Woodstock.

Documents used in these workshops are found online: HYPERLINK "www.GetReadySEPDX.wordpress.com" www.GetReadySEPDX.wordpress.com.