Professor Honored for Seismic Safety Contributions

May 16, 2017 3:42 pm

Tsunami expert Lori Dengler has just been named the recipient of the 2017 Frank Press Public Service Award for her “exceptional leadership as a scientist, writer, educator, communicator and advocate of tsunami research and preparedness,” according to a Humboldt State University announcement on Friday. Cal OES’s Kate Long says Lori is part of the Cal OES Earthquake and Tsunami Program through a contract with Humboldt State University (NTHMP-funded).  RCTWG is also one of the founding organizations making up the Earthquake Country Alliance (ECA); the cross-sector, cross-region networking coalition Cal OES organizes and supports; ECA/RCTWG is pivotal in grassroots organizing for tsunami awareness week and the great California shakeout. RCTWG has also served as the model by which other regional ECA Group’s have formed. CAL OES Eq/Tsu Program was also one the three organizations that nominated … continue reading »

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Tsunami Preparedness – Saving Lives and Protecting Property

Mar 28, 2017 3:00 pm
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Ryan Arba is the branch chief for the Cal OES Earthquake and Tsunami Program.   In this episode, Ryan talks about the program, its federal partner NOAA and the focus of this year’s Tsunami Preparedness Week events.

The California Governor’s Office of Emergency Services, Earthquake, Tsunami and Volcano Program is continuously researching, learning, and collaborating with science, industry, and academic experts to develop and confirm the latest, best available knowledge base to help make California’s residents and visitors safer in the event of tsunamic activity. By mapping potential inundation and evacuation areas, providing assistance in response and evacuation planning, implementing outreach, education and warning signage at the coast, as well as determining ways to improve preparedness and resilience of California’s ports and harbors, our staff strives to ensure everyone on the coast remains safe before, during and after the next tsunami.

Shawn Boyd & Ryan Arba In-Studio

Catastrophic tsunamis are rare, we may have a tendency to get complacent and think that one will never happen while we’re at the beach. However, every coastline in the world is vulnerable to a tsunami. Although a tsunami cannot be prevented, you can diminish adverse impacts through community preparedness, timely warnings and effective response.​​​

​California’s 2017 Tsunami Preparedness Week is March 27-31. On March 29, Cal OES, the California Geological Survey (CGS) and the NWS will conduct a conference call with emergency managers from counties along the coast to test several aspects of the tsunami response, including the ability of the National Tsunami Warning Center (NTWC) to send and coast emergency organizations to receive specific tsunami alert messages.

During the conference call, representatives from the NTWC, Cal OES and CGS will also test their ability to accurately calculate and verify information contained in draft Tsunami Evacuation Playbooks that will be used by local emergency to determine if an evacuation is necessary and, if show, for how big of an area. The test also allows emergency managers from coastal communities to confirm their ability to receive playbook-related information, test their ability to make decisions regarding evacuation, and as well as to test their abilities to communicate information to port and harbor officials as well as to test their reverse notification and other warning systems reaching people in coastal hazard areas.

We’d love to hear from you – Record your questions or comments

Helpful Links and Additional Resources

UC Santa Cruz Tsunami Research Expedition

Cal OES National Tsunami Preparedness Week

Cal OES Tsunami Program


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Inside the Eye of the Storm: The Cal OES/NOAA Tsunami Exercise

Apr 23, 2015 3:11 pm

NOAA and the Calif. Office of Emergency Services (Cal OES) conducted a test of the tsunami warning communications system on March 25th in coastal areas of central and southern California.

NOAA’s National Weather Service Offices in Monterey, Oxnard and San Diego broadcast the “Required Monthly Test,” and was also broadcast on NOAA Weather Radio All Hazards, local television and radio stations. Cal OES collaborated with 20 coastal counties in addition to NOAA and the Civil Air Patrol to carry out the annual Tsunami Warning Communications Test. This year the weather cooperated with exercise and allowed the Civil Air Patrol to participate in a flyover in Mendocino, Humboldt and Del Norte counties. During the test, the CAP tested their capability to alert the public of a simulated tsunami warning using an on-board public address system.

There were three … continue reading »

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Wireless Emergency Alerts: Strengthening Emergency Management Statewide

Jan 20, 2015 6:48 pm

SACRAMENTO – With more mobile devices than Americans, emergency management personnel view these devices as important assets to alert people as soon as possible that their lives or property are seriously at risk.

Cal OES is raising awareness about the Wireless Emergency Alerts to the public as well as to local public safety agencies with a 20-minute video called “Why Not WEA?” The objective of this short video is to share the benefits of these alerts, dispel any myths associated with them and encourage you to learn more about them and their potentially lifesaving role when facing natural disasters, as well as other emergencies.

“We are just one of the 24 California public safety agencies who have signed up to send these warnings” said Cal … continue reading »

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Deceiving The “Deceptive Killer”

Nov 7, 2013 2:26 pm

Winter is the time for comfort, for good food and warmth, for the touch of a friendly hand and for a talk beside the fire: it is the time for home. ~Edith Sitwell

It seems a little odd to write about preparing for winter when it’s a comfortable 70 degrees outside at the Cal OES Headquarters in Mather. But, according to the Old Farmer’s Almanac this winter is shaping up to be “bitterly cold,” with below-average temperatures in two-thirds of the country, so piercing cold that it could even bring a blizzard to the first outdoor Superbowl in years, according to the 200 year old publication. 

We can’t be sure what type of weather California is expected to see this winter, but it’s a great reminder that severe weather can strike at any time (just like … continue reading »

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2012: Dodged the Mayan Apocalypse, Still Costly Year in Disasters

Dec 27, 2012 10:51 am

drought 2012 novemberThe Mayan calendar finally rolled over again this December and the Four Horsemen didn’t appear, no downpour of poisonous frogs or locusts. On the other hand, 2012 was a disastrous year in many other ways. According to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), this year past 365 days or so was one of the costliest on record in the United States.

While 2011 was also a record year for disasters, when 14 different events cost more than $60 billion in damages; this year exceeded overall costs of disasters. This surge is much in part due to the hurricane and subsequent superstorm Sandy, as well as the wide spread drought.

Hurricane Sandy has already totaled more than $100 billion in damages to New York, New Jersey and … continue reading »

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