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City of Renton will participate in Cascadia Rising exercise in June to prepare for major earthquake

June 1, 2016

City of Renton contacts:
Preeti Shridhar,
Deputy Public Affairs Administrator, 425-430-6569
Mindi Mattson, Emergency Management Coordinator, 425-430-7041

Renton, WA: The City of Renton will join jurisdictions across the Pacific Northwest and participate in Cascadia Rising, a full scale response exercise, to prepare for a 9.0 magnitude earthquake. The city will activate its Emergency Operations Center (EOC) for the event on June 7 and 8.

“We continue to be warned that this region will likely be hit by a devastating earthquake someday, with the potential to be the worst this nation has ever experienced. The city’s participation in this exercise will strengthen relationships with our regional partners,” said Renton Mayor Denis Law. “If we ever suffer a catastrophe of this magnitude, it will be absolutely critical that we’re prepared to work together.”

Cascadia Rising 2016 is a full scale exercise that will simulate a response to a major earthquake along the Cascadia Subduction Zone fault which runs from Vancouver Island to Northern California. Involved in the response will be the Washington National Guard, FEMA (Federal Emergency Management Agency), State of Washington, King County and local county and city governments.

As part of the exercise elements of the Washington National Guard will establish their camp at the southern end of Renton Municipal Airport from June 5-11. Residents will also see military ground traffic, airplane and helicopter flights to and from the airport.

City staff have been preparing response scenarios and receiving EOC training for 18 months. Fourteen regional core capabilities will be tested: operational communications, public health and medical services, mass care services, situational assessment, critical transportation, operational coordination, public information and warning, infrastructure systems, incident action planning, public/private services and resource management, search and rescue operations, fatality management, environment response/health and safety and on-scene security and protection.

NOTE: This practice event will not disrupt the normal flow of traffic and have no impact on residents' activities or travel plans.