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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: Wednesday, October 12, 2011
Vivian Eason, 360-786-5243, or email easonv@co.thurston.wa.us

County Commissioners Proclaim Flood Awareness Week, October 23 to 29

The Thurston County Board of County Commissioners on Tuesday proclaimed the week of October 23-29 as Flood Awareness Week. Citing the county's vulnerability to floods, the proclamation encourages the continued provision of preparedness education and information to county residents. Between 1962 and 2011, Thurston County has received 18 Federal Disaster Declarations related wholly or in part to flooding. On an annual average basis, floods are the most costly natural disaster in the region. High groundwater flooding is also a hazard in Thurston County as evidenced by the flooding of 1998-99 that damaged structures, contaminated wells and contributed to landslides.

EVENTS: Flood Awareness Week kicks off with a free, hands-on course in flood response offered by Thurston County Emergency Management on Saturday, October 22, 9:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m, at the West Thurston Fire Department, 18720 Sargent Road SW in Rochester. The course provides tools for assessing flood emergencies including risk analysis of roads, bridges, dams, and other infrastructure. Safety considerations, Incident Command Systems and Response vs. Recovery issues will also be covered. The class will conclude with a field exercise. Students are advised to dress appropriately for the weather . Pre-registration is required and class size is limited. To register for this free training, contact Vivian Eason at 360-786-5243 or at eason@www.co.thurston.wa.us

Preparedness Expo: The free event takes place on Saturday, October 29 from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. at the Marcus Pavilion, Worthington Conference Center, Saint Martin's University, 5300 Pacific Ave. Speakers will discuss this winter's forecast. Demonstrations include fire extinguisher safety, the Jaws of Life and Germ City. There will also be kids' activities, prizes and vendors with preparedness supplies. Details are available at www.co.thurston.wa.us/em/expo or by calling Vivian Eason at 786-5243.

Preparedness Tips will also be featured throughout Flood Awareness Week by the county's Emergency Management Department on www.facebook.com/ThurstonEm and www.twitter.com/ThurstonEM A wealth of preparedness information is also available on the county’s Emergency Management site at www.co.thurston.wa.us/em

County Commissioners:

Carolina Mejia
District 1

Gary Edwards
District 2

Tye Menser
District 3