Marianas Variety Guam Edition – The Local and Regional Newspaper

12 23Wed10222014

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Emergency responders show readiness

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GUAM’S emergency responders were on alert on Saturday and demonstrated to residents how they prepare for any type of disaster during the Guam Homeland Security/Office of Civil Defense’s 7th annual National Preparedness Month static display event at the Agana Shopping Center.

Leslie Leon Guerrero, public affairs officer for Guam Homeland Security/Office of Civil Defense, shows off a color wheel indicating which villages on Guam are in low lying areas and where residents can go to in the event there’s a tsunami warning alert.  The information was part of several displays during the finale of the GHS/OCD’s 7th annual national preparedness month at the Agana Shopping Center on Saturday.
Photo by Zita Y. Taitano

Some of the demonstrations that took place included a mock detection of a bomb by the Guam Police Department’s canine unit and a rodeo by members of the Community Emergency Response Team in the parking lot of the shopping center.

Indoors at the center court of the store, representatives from various agencies set up displays for residents who were interested in learning more about preparing for a typhoon, tsunamis and even one of the island’s notorious invasive species, the rhino beetle.

Leslie Leon Guerrero, spokesperson for Guam Homeland Security/Office of Civil Defense, said they also introduced a couple of new items for the community. 

One of them includes an information color wheel that shows which villages on Guam are vulnerable to tsunamis and where people can go to for safety.   

Leon Guerrero also showed a coloring book for kids called Get Ready Guahan – preparing for disasters. 

The book is both educational and entertaining for children and features cartoon characters named after some of the children of employees at GHS/OCD.  The characters represent a type of hazard or disaster.  There is Kaito Tsunami and Mitigation Madilyn, as well as Anna Flame.

“We’ve been working on this for over a year,” she said.  “Other things we don’t have yet are baseball cards for each of our hazard (characters).”

Another new program the agency is introducing is called the Great Guam Shake Out, which is an earthquake drill scheduled to take place on Oct. 21 at 10:21 a.m.  

Edeine Camacho, program coordinator, it will be the first time it’s going to be held on island and that they are registering business, schools and families to participate.

“We’re mirroring this effort after California.  Last year, California registered 6.9 million people. What it is that at 10:21 a.m. on 10/21, we’re encouraging people, whether they are at home or at the office or school, to be part of the event,” she said adding that data will be collected on how many people are actually prepared in the event Guam has another major earthquake like the one in 1993. 

For more information about this event, log on to www.ShakeOut.org/Guam.
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