Tuesday, July 17 , 2018, 9:00 pm | Fair 66º


Tsunami Community Meeting Scheduled for Wednesday

Santa Barbara is in the final stages of being designated a 'TsunamiReady City,' with signs in affected areas to start going up in November

The City of Santa Barbara is in its final stages in joining other coastal communities to become a “TsunamiReady City” based on requirements from the National Weather Service.

One of the requirements includes putting up signs throughout the potential inundation area of the coastal area that visually explain what to do in case of an emergency. Installation of the signs is expected to begin in November.

About 58 signs will be placed in and around the Santa Barbara beachfront area. The signs will indicate when you are entering or leaving and if you are in an area that has potential for flooding from a tsunami event. There will also be evacuation route signs put up at selected key intersections.

As part of an awareness/preparedness campaign, the city will host a Tsunami Community Meeting from 6:30 to 8 p.m. Wednesday at the Cabrillo Arts Pavilion, 1118 E. Cabrillo Blvd. Invitations to the event were sent to addresses within the affected area.

The event will include presentations from UCSB, the National Weather Service and the city’s Office of Emergency Services.

OES will facilitate the program, and there will be a question-and-answer period. A map has been generated as to where the signs will be placed, and it will be displayed at this event. Click here to view the map online.

“The city has been working on becoming a ‘TsunamiReady City’ since it received the National Weather Service’s StormReady Designation in 2009,” said Yolanda McGlinchey, emergency services manager.

She noted that the city developed a Draft Tsunami Response Plan, which it used as part of a functional exercise in 2009. Click here to view the draft, which is due to be finalized before the end of the year.

“The City of Santa Barbara will not be ‘tsunami-proof.’ However, being a ‘TsunamiReady’ community means Santa Barbara will be more prepared for the dangers associated with tsunamis and that will ultimately save lives and reduce property damage,” said Mark Jackson, meteorologist-in-charge of the Oxnard National Weather Service office.

“The city cares that its residents, businesses and tourists know to be aware of the possible hazards associated with living, working or visiting our coastal community. We want our community to know that it is not a good idea to run to the beaches when there is a tsunami warning,” Fire Chief Andrew DiMizio said. “What we want them to do is be prepared to evacuate if necessary, and have their emergency kits ready to go.”

— Yolanda McGlinchey is an emergency services manager for the City of Santa Barbara Fire Department and the Office of Emergency Services.


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