Disaster Communications Exercise 2017

For Immediate Release: Wednesday, May 17, 2017

Sponsored by: Emergency Management Department

Washington County to Conduct Emergency Communications Exercise

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On May 17, 2017, Washington County Emergency Management will lead a full scale exercise focusing on emergency communications from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. This exercise will include 20 county, city, special district and private-sector partners including area hospitals and utilities. 

The purpose of this exercise is to test interagency backup communications capabilities, evaluate current communications plans and offer emergency response personnel an opportunity to test their emergency communications systems and equipment. 

"This exercise demonstrates a commitment to provide our communities with robust and coordinated emergency response capabilities and highlights important public-private partnerships," said Scott Porter, manager of Washington County Emergency Management. 

Data obtained during this exercise will allow emergency management and partner organizations to update and enhance communications plans and procedures, which increases disaster resilience. 

As government agencies work to improve coordination and decision making, experts in disaster response emphasize that families and individuals should also take steps toward better preparedness. Because a subduction zone earthquake would occur without warning and cause power blackouts and other disruptions for weeks on end, each household is encouraged to gather enough emergency supplies to feed and hydrate each family member for two or three weeks, if not longer. Families should discuss ways to reconnect with one another after an earthquake hits, pre-designate locations to meet if their homes are no longer safe and make other arrangements. More information about preparing for earthquakes and other natural disasters can be found at these web sites: 


Media Contact:

Philip Bransford, Communications Officer