Stay Cool – High Temps Bring Risk of Heat-Related Illness

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Temperatures in Irvine and many inland Orange County communities are expected to reach high temperatures of upper 90’s & low 100’s on Sunday & Monday, increasing the risk of heat related illnesses like heat exhaustion and heat stroke for those who are more sensitive to heat.

Prolonged exposure to high temperatures may cause serious conditions like heat exhaustion or heat stroke and can even be fatal. Symptoms of heat exhaustion may include heavy sweating, muscle cramps, weakness, headache, nausea or vomiting and dizziness. At the first sign of heat exhaustion, move to a cool location, rest and drink fluids.  Warning signs of heat stroke may include an extremely high body temperature, unconsciousness, confusion, hot and dry skin (no sweating), a rapid, strong pulse, and a throbbing headache. If symptoms of heat stroke occur, immediately call for medical assistance. Move the person to a shady area and begin cooling their body with water.

Recommended precautions to prevent heat related illnesses include:

  • Drink plenty of water; don’t wait until you are thirsty.
  • Wear light, loose-fitting clothing.
  • Stay out of the sun if possible, and when in the sun, wear a hat, preferably with a wide brim, and use sunscreen.
  • Avoid strenuous activities if you are outside or in non-air conditioned buildings. If you are working outdoors, take frequent rest and refreshment breaks in a shaded area.
  • Never leave children, elderly people or pets unattended in closed cars or other vehicles.
  • Check on those who are at high risk to make sure they are staying cool – including seniors who live alone, people with heart or lung disease, and young children.
  • Stay cool indoors – if your home is not air conditioned, visit public facilities such as shopping malls and libraries to stay cool.

For more information on heat related illnesses, visit the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention website at https://www.cdc.gov/extremeheat/index.html

Stay Cool, Stay Hydrated, Stay Informed!

 

UCLA Lockdown Following Tragic Shooting

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Yesterday’s tragic shooting at UCLA resulted in an immediate lockdown of the entire campus until law enforcement officials could verify there was no longer an active threat to students, staff and faculty. This incident immediately triggered inquiries regarding how our campus would respond to such an incident and what actions our community members can take to protect themselves during an ongoing threat.  Our protocol here at UCI would really mirror what we witnessed yesterday on the news, however, rather than “lockdown” we use the phrase “Secure in Place.”  This is one of many protective actions that may be issued via zotALERT and it’s critical that our community members understand what they mean. Please review the “Red Flip Charts” (UCI Emergency Procedures) which can be found in almost every building, classroom, breakroom/common area and dorm rooms on campus to help clarify any confusion regarding these actions.  They can also be accessed online at http://www.police.uci.edu/em/UCI_EmerProc.pdf

In the event that our campus experiences something similar in nature to the incident which took place yesterday, the community should be prepared to follow a “Secure in Place” order. This protective action is explained in detail below.  Please contact the UCIPD Emergency Services Manager, Anne Widney for any questions related to this action at awidney@uci.edu Also, if you have not signed up for zotALERTS yet please register @ http://www.oit.uci.edu/zotalert/

Secure In Place

A Secure-In-Place notification may be issued when the UCI Police Department determines that there is a potential threat to the campus. When notified to Secure-In-Place, initiate action immediately. Take ALL zotALERTS seriously. You will be safest by placing a locked door or other barricade between you and the associated violence or danger.

How do I Secure-In-Place?

  • REMAIN CALM!
  • Find an interior room and lock or barricade the doors.
  • If there are other employees, students/visitors with you or in the vicinity, tell them to go to the closest office/classroom/lab/residence hall.
  • To minimize vulnerability, turn off lights, silence phones, and draw blinds.
  • Move away from doors and windows.
  • Move/use furniture to provide added protection.
  • Follow instructions from Police, Fire, Zone Crew team members, and other first responders.
  • DO NOT leave until an all-clear message is received.

What if I am outside? 

  • If you are outside during a Secure-In-Place emergency you should seek shelter in a nearby building.
  • If you are unable to get inside a building, seek nearby shelter, e.g. large trees, walls, cars in a parking lot/garage, away from the danger area (if known).
  • Follow instructions from Police, Fire, Zone Crew team members, and other first responders.
  • Stay sheltered until an all-clear message is received.

What if I am in a classroom or lecture hall?

  • Notify class of “Secure-In-Place” order (students, if your professor or TA does not see the alert – notify them).
  • Lock or barricade the doors.
  • Turn off lights, silence phones, and draw blinds.
  • Move away from doors and windows.
  • Move/use furniture to provide added protection.
  • Follow instructions from Police, Fire, Zone Crew team members, and other first responders.
  • DO NOT leave until an all-clear message is received.

 

UC Merced: Host Site for County-Wide Violent Incident Exercise

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As many of us remember, last November UC Merced experienced a scenario that all law enforcement officers train for but hope they never encounter when a freshman student carried out a planned attack which left four people wounded and resulted in his own death by campus police. Although tragic, just like the aftermath of any incident, what becomes imperative are the efforts we invest in lessons learned and measures we take to ensure the future prevention, protection and mitigation from future crisis similar in nature.

Over the weekend (May 21st), UC Merced partnered with the Merced County Office of Emergency Services to deliver a multi-agency violent incident training at the university. Participating agencies included the California Highway Patrol, the Merced County Sheriff’s Office, the Atwater and Merced police departments, the California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection, Riggs Ambulance Service, Merced College, Merced County, city fire departments, California State Parks and 50 students from the Atwater High School drama department who served as exercise actors. UC Merced Police Chief Albert Vasquez stated “The collaborative training is important, so that if a violent incident does occur, law enforcement and emergency personnel recognize each other and there are adequate resources to respond.”

The scenario that all exercise participants were provided at the beginning of this county-wide training is as follows: “A lone gunman is in the building, multiple people have been injured and the suspect is armed with semi-automatic handguns and extra ammunition. It’s up to law enforcement and emergency responders to evacuate the injured and subdue the gunman – all at the same time.” To read more about this training and the lengths that not only the university but the county as a whole is taking to be prepared for these types of possible incidents in the future please see http://www.mercedsunstar.com/news/article79198792.html

 

UCI Participates In Full-Scale Exercise

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Every year the UCIPD Emergency Services Division hosts an annual exercise that allows responders of the Emergency Operations Center (EOC) and various Department Operation Centers (DOC) across campus to sharpen their skills and better prepare the campus to respond to an emergency in an effective manner. These “functional” exercises typically involve a couple hours of exercise play with simulation of a plausible scenario. However, this exercise set a new standard as the University’s first ever “Full-Scale Exercise” that lasted the entire day involving the coordination of the EOC and four of the six DOCs including EH&S, Facilities Management, Housing and OIT. The primary objective tested by the EOC was the handoff between first shift and second shift; something that had never been tested previously. Another objective was to test the operational coordination and communication between the EOC and the DOCs as they were challenged by arising problems within each of their given disciplines/areas of expertise as a result of the impact rendered by a 7.1 magnitude earthquake along the Newport-Inglewood Fault.

Overall, the feedback from participants was quite positive with identification of strengths as well as areas for improvement. The EOC and DOC teams continue to demonstrate growth in their roles and responsibilities with each passing exercise and it’s exciting to watch these programs mature. The Emergency Services Division wishes to recognize and thank these staff members for their outstanding commitment to enhancing the University’s preparedness efforts and, in many cases, volunteering to serve in a role that it outside of their normal job responsibilities.

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Celebrate National EMS Week: May 15 – 21, 2016

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In 1973, President Gerald Ford authorized EMS Week to celebrate EMS practitioners and the important work they do in our nation’s communities. Back then, EMS was a new profession, and EMS practitioners had only just started to be recognized as a critical component of emergency medicine and the public health safety net.

A lot has changed since then. EMS is now firmly established as an essential public function and a vital component of the medical care continuum. On any given day, EMS practitioners help save lives by responding to medical emergencies, including heart attack, difficulty breathing, a fall or accident, drowning, cardiac arrest, stroke, drug overdose or acute illness. EMS may provide both basic and advanced medical care at the scene of an emergency and en route to a hospital. EMS practitioners care for their patients’ medical needs and show caring and compassion to their patients in their most difficult moments.

So, next week, or any week for that matter, when you’re in the grocery store and you see an EMS practitioner in uniform thank them for their vital public service they provide to our communities every day. For more information about National EMS Week visit https://www.naemt.org/ems_agencies_audience/ems-week/celebrate-ems-week

 

California’s “Wildfire Awareness Week” May 1 – 7, 2016

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On Monday May 2nd, Governor Edmund G. Brown Jr. proclaimed May 1-7 as “Wildfire Awareness Week” in California. Last year’s destructive Valley and Butte fires as well as the ongoing drought and vast tree mortality remind Californians of the fire dangers the state continues to face this fire season.

Wildfire Awareness Week was kicked off at CAL FIRE’s Aviation Management Unit in Sacramento by Governor Brown with state and federal leaders. Governor Brown was joined by Cal OES Director Mark Ghilarducci, CAL FIRE Director Ken Pimlott, California National Guard General David Baldwin, U.S. Forest Service Region 5 Deputy Regional Forester Jeanne Wade Evans, and California Natural Resources Agency Secretary John Laird.

State and federal officials not only discussed steps their respective agencies are taking in preparation of fire season, but stressed steps Californians can take to reduce their risk – such as having a disaster plan and kit, creating defensible space and heeding evacuation warnings. View a short video clip of the press conference at http://www.oesnews.com/california-kicks-off-wildfire-awareness-week/

Although the majority of us here, at least those residing in Orange County, do not live in heavily-wooded; rural areas, it is absolutely necessary that all Californian’s understand the wildfire risk that we face moving in to the upcoming long summer months. Learn more at http://www.readyforwildfire.org/

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Are You MenB Ready?

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Meningococcal disease is a serious bacterial infection caused by Neisseria meningitidis that can affect the brain and spinal cord. It spreads through close or lengthy contact (i.e. kissing, sharing drinks, coughing, living in the same household).

GET VACCINATED: MAY 11 & 13

Walk-in clinic
10am – 4pm
Student Health Center
(949) 824 – 5301
Free vaccination with UCSHIP
($191 without UCSHIP)
*For ages 16-23

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1906 San Francisco Earthquake Remembered

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Scores of hearty San Franciscans and history buffs came together last Monday, April 18th to commemorate the anniversary of the great earthquake of 1906 with period costumes, a moment of silence and the traditional wailing of the sirens at the moment the quake struck 110 years ago.

Bob Sarlatte, the master of ceremonies for the day, walked the assembled throng through the events of April 18, 1906 that changed the face of the city forever, from the moment the magnitude 7.9 temblor struck to the raging blaze that followed and the stand firefighters made at Van Ness Avenue to stop the advance of the fire.

Monday’s ceremony was different than the 109 that came before it as it was the first commemoration since the last known survivor died earlier this year.

“We’re here to honor those who died, but also those who survived and rebuilt this city and continue to rebuild this city,” Sarlatte said to the crowd, many of whom came dressed in 1906-style attire. “It can and will happen again. The San Andreas fault never rests.” The entire article is available @ http://www.emergencymgmt.com/disaster/110-years-later-San-Francisco-remembers-quake-victims.html

The San Andreas Fault is one thing that we here in southern California regretfully share in common with San Francisco and while our earthquake risks span far beyond this single threat, it is our greatest known hazard and thus the scenario that the Great Shakeout is based upon. The U.S. Geological Survey (USGS), Southern California Earthquake Center (SCEC) and the California Geological Survey produced a very good 4-minute video which realistically depicts what a 7.8 earthquake scenario along the southern portion of the San Andreas Fault would render. The video can be viewed at the following link https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8Z5ckzem7uA Likewise, re-visit our top 10 Earthquake Tips for the University @ http://www.police.uci.edu/em/EarthquakeSafetyTop10.pdf

 

Recent Rattles Along the Ring of Fire

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Last week, three deadly earthquakes occurred along the “Pacific Ring of Fire” (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ring_of_Fire) within the span of three days; 2 in Japan (6.2 & 7.0 magnitudes) and 1 in Ecuador (7.8 magnitude). Given the fact that the entire west coast is a part of this continuous series of oceanic trenches, volcanic belts and plate movements, these events have caught a lot of attention and speculation as to whether or not we could be next. http://abcnews.go.com/topics/news/disasters/pacific-ring-of-fire.htm?page=4 According to the US Geological Survey (USGS) it is far too early to conclude that there is any connection between the three, especially considering that 90% of the world’s earthquakes take place along the “Ring of Fire” annually. http://www.cnn.com/2016/04/18/americas/earthquakes-five-things-to-know/

Whether connected or not, these earthquakes are timely for all of us as next week (April 30th) is America’s PrepareAthon and nothing ignites one’s motivation to get prepared like a real-world event or, in this case, three real-world events. America’s PrepareAthon is a grassroots campaign for action to increase community preparedness and resilience. Visit FEMA’s PrepareAthon homepage @ https://community.fema.gov/ and learn about your hazards, what you can do to take action now, read stories about community and individual preparedness and much more. Be smart, take part, prepare!

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March Is Red Cross Month

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President Barack Obama has proclaimed March as Red Cross Month across the country, a tradition begun by President Franklin D. Roosevelt in 1943. All of our presidents, including President Barack Obama, have designated March as Red Cross Month to recognize how the American Red Cross helps people across the country and around the world.

“Over a century and a half ago, as gunfire echoed through America’s skies and division flared between North and South, a trailblazing woman, Clara Barton, braved bullets and cannon fire to deliver much-needed care, comfort, and supplies to wounded soldiers of the Civil War. Undaunted by expectations of women at the time, Clara Barton persevered, as she had her whole life, and strived to aid those who sacrificed to save our Union. Determined that humanitarianism could thrive in peace as well as in conflict, she carried her resolve overseas upon the war’s end and was introduced to a relief organization in Europe that inspired her to come home to the United States and establish the American Red Cross.” Read the entire proclamation here: https://www.whitehouse.gov/the-press-office/2016/02/29/presidential-proclamation-american-red-cross-month-2016

During Red Cross Month, the American Red Cross is recognizing the country’s everyday heroes – those who reach out to help people in need. These are the people who –

  • Help disaster victims get on the road to recovery
  • Give blood to help a hospital patient
  • Brighten the day of an injured service member who is in a hospital far from home
  • Take one of our lifesaving classes and step forward to assist someone having a heart attack or to save a drowning child

The Red Cross responds to a community disaster every eight minutes, providing shelter, food, emotional support and other necessities to those affected. It provides 24-hour support to members of the military, veterans and their families at home and around the world. It must collect 14,000 units of blood every day to fulfill the country’s needs. It trains millions of people in first aid, water safety and other lifesaving skills. And it supports the vaccination of children around the globe against measles and rubella.

Red Cross Month is a great time to become part of the Red Cross. You can work on a preparedness plan with members of your household so you are ready for emergencies. You can also become a volunteer, give blood or make a financial donation. For more information, contact the local Orange County Chapter @ http://www.redcross.org/ca/orange-county