BOTHELL, Wash. – Why is there so much activity right now at the FEMA Region 10 office in Bothell?
Partners from the American Red Cross to the Bonneville Power Administration to the U.S. Army, and many others, are joining FEMA for what is known as a table-top exercise, planning for a larger full-scale exercise in March.
A table-top is an exercise in which field and logistics movements are “simulated” – not actually performed – while planning and decision-making proceed as if they are. A similar scenario will play out in late March when many of the same partners participate in a full-scale exercise with real field and logistical activity.
The table-top brings more than 100 people to the Region 10 Response Coordination Center in Bothell through Thursday.
The scenario involves a magnitude 9.2 earthquake and resulting tsunami. Such a quake would be the second strongest in known history, and the largest in known U.S. history. In fact, that largest-ever U.S. quake inspired the scenario; the upcoming full-scale “Alaska Shield” exercise coincides with the 50th anniversary of the Great Alaska Earthquake of 1964.
The scenario projects the loss of hundreds of lives. Also, it has thousands displaced in an Alaska winter with no power or heat and possibly tens of thousands of buildings damaged. Other problems would include loss of communications and how to moving relief commodities to survivors despite destroyed roads and bridges.
Region 10 Administrator Ken Murphy said of the table-top, “This exercise is important for all of us to work with all of our partners leading up to Alaska Shield, and to make sure that all of our systems are working together smoothly and seamlessly.”
FEMA regularly tests procedures and practices in this way, together with local, state, tribes, and other federal agencies.
FEMA’s mission is to support our citizens and first responders to ensure that as a nation we work together to build, sustain, and improve our capability to prepare for, protect against, respond to, recover from, and mitigate all hazards.
Follow the Alaska Shield Exercise at #Akshield and FEMA online at twitter.com/femaregion10, www.facebook.com/fema, and www.youtube.com/fema. The social media links provided are for reference only. FEMA does not endorse any non-government websites, companies or applications.
News Desk: 425-487-4610