The Northwest will practice for four days starting Tuesday how to prepare and respond to a 9.0 earthquake in a simulation called Cascadia Rising.
In Tukwila the simulation will be most obvious at about 10 a.m. Tuesday, when a Black Hawk helicopter hovers over the Green River near South 180th Street and West Valley Highway.
Boats will “inspect” critical levees in the area, then will test the operability of communications between the boats and the helicopter above.
On Wednesday, the city Parks and Recreation Department will set up at 10 a.m. an emergency trailer that’s designed to house individuals in an emergency.
The city also will activate its Emergency Operations Center at Fire Station 51 in Southcenter as part of the simulation.
All such EOCs in the Northwest, government and private, will activate as part of ‘Cascadia Rising,’ a national-level exercise that will simulate a 9.0 Cascadia Subduction Zone earthquake and tsunami along the Washington and Oregon coast.
Thousands of people, including military personnel, will participate to test a joint response to one of the most complex disaster scenarios facing the Pacific Northwest, according to a FEMA news release.
“A 9.0 Cascadia Subduction Zone earthquake will be a disaster unlike anyone has ever seen,” said Ken Murphy, regional administrator for FEMA Region 10. “Cascadia Rising will test our own preparedness. It is exercises like this, ahead of a disaster, that foster coordination and help build relationships before a real world event occurs.”