Battle Ground chiefs to advocate for disaster preparedness

Battle Ground Police Chief Bob Richardson and Fire District 3 Chief Scott Sorenson are inviting the public to learn what they should do in the case of a large-scale disaster

BATTLE GROUND — Battle Ground Police Chief Bob Richardson and Fire District 3 Chief Scott Sorenson want residents and families to know that if a large disaster strikes, they could very well be on their own for a few days or even longer as emergency responders are overwhelmed or forced to prioritize saving lives.

Battle Ground Police Chief Bob Richardson (left) and Fire Chief Scott Sorenson are inviting the public to learn what they should do in the case of a large-scale disaster. Photos provided by the city of Battle Ground
Battle Ground Police Chief Bob Richardson (left) and Fire Chief Scott Sorenson are inviting the public to learn what they should do in the case of a large-scale disaster. Photos provided by the city of Battle Ground

That’s why the next Coffee With the Chiefs open house event, scheduled for 6 p.m. Thu., May 10, will focus on the topic of emergency preparedness. The event will be held at the Battle Ground police and fire stations, 505 and 507 SW First St., Battle Ground.

“We want to emphasize the importance of emergency preparedness for you and your families,” said Chiefs Richardson and Sorenson in a letter to the community.  “During a large-scale disaster, it will take at least 72 hours for resources from local, state and federal resources to mobilize and respond.”

The chiefs say that while their departments’ training and access to equipment and resources prepares them to respond to emergencies, a large-scale regional disaster could overload responders and force residents to fend for themselves.

Services such as sewer, water and electricity could be delayed depending on the scope of any given disaster, the chiefs said, adding that the impact on retails supply chains could mean a shortage of drinking water, food and medicine.

“No one expects a typical day will turn to disaster, but that is the nature of earthquakes, tornadoes, fires, and other natural, and sometimes man-made disasters,” the city said in a press release. “It is important to be prepared.”

Attendees of the Coffee With the Chiefs even will learn how to best prepare their homes and families for emergencies and disasters; how to receive official alerts and notifications; and information about the plans and processes the city and CRESA use for preparing, responding to and recovering from disasters, according to the press release.  

The open house will also include a tour of the police and fire stations as well as the city’s Emergency Operations Center. All ages are welcome and encouraged to attend.

Information provided by city of Battle Ground.

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