Emergency Management

Flood Disaster Recovery Center to open Wednesday in Puyallup
Posted By Sheri Badger on Dec 19th, 2006 at 9:34 AM

Tacoma, WA – December 19, 2006 – Pierce County, the State of Washington and the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) are opening a Disaster Recovery Center (DRC) in Pierce County to help individuals and businesses who suffered damages from the Nov. 2-11 flooding and severe storms.

The Puyallup DRC will open Wednesday, Dec. 20, at noon at the following location: Microchip Technology Campus 1111 39th Avenue SE Building A, First Floor Puyallup, WA The center will operate Monday through Saturday, from 8:30 a.m. to 6:30 p.m., but will be closed Christmas holiday, Dec. 24 and 25, and New Years, Dec. 31 and Jan. 1.

While there is no direct financial assistance available at the DRC, staff will help flood victims register for FEMA help or answering any additional questions for those who have already registered. “It is important for all flood victims to visit the Disaster Recovery Center, even if they have already registered with FEMA,” said Pierce County Emergency Management Director Steve Bailey, “there will be a variety volunteer and local services representatives available.”

A key agency on the road to disaster recovery is the U.S. Small Business Association (SBA). At the recovery center, SBA representatives explain how SBA low-interest disaster loans can help homeowners, renters, businesses and private nonprofit organizations pay for their disaster losses.

To apply for assistance, disaster survivors can call FEMA’s toll-free registration number: 1-800-621-FEMA (3362) or TTY 1-800-463-7585 for persons who are speech or hearing impaired. Please bring your registration number to the DRC. Note: Pierce County residents with windstorm damages should continue call 1-866-798-6363, please do not call FEMA or report your wind damage to the DRC ####


Power Restoration Update
Posted By Sheri Badger on Dec 19th, 2006 at 5:01 AM

Tacoma, WA – December 19, 2006 – Crews are continuing to assess and repair damaged lines and equipment to restore power to those customers as soon as possible. Peninsula Light is reporting that there are approximately 3500 customers remaining without power. Tacoma Power reports 1500 still being worked and Puget Sound Energy is down to 4850.

Customers are reminded that the power lines that run from the pole to the house are the homeowners responsibility. The power companies are not able to restore service to individual homes if there has been secondary damage to the house.

If there has been damage to the service panel of the house, the customer will need to contact an electrician to make necessary repairs at the house. Power cannot be restored if the service connection has not been repaired and inspected. An electrician can do the inspection even before the power is restored. Customers are encouraged to have this work completed as soon as possible and thus speed the process. ###


December’s windstorm and November’s flooding–where to call to report damages?
Posted By Sheri Badger on Dec 18th, 2006 at 11:45 AM

Tacoma, WA – December 18, 2006 – With two major storms hitting the region back to back, it is confusing for people to know where to report damages. December’s Windstorm Pierce County residents who experienced damages to their homes or businesses during last week’s windstorm are asked to call the Department of Emergency Management at 1-866-798-6363 between the hours of 8 a.m. and 5 p.m. Please be ready supply:

  Name and address of the affected property

  Type of insurance (homeowners), including deductible

  A description of damage, even if uninsured

  A personal estimate of damages

  Estimates of the fair market value of the damaged home or business

This information is important for county emergency management officials to provide state officials to use for any possible request for a major disaster declaration. November’s Flooding Pierce County is one of 11 Washington counties qualifying under a Presidential Disaster Declaration.

Residents seeking assistance with damages from that storm must now register with FEMA. They can do that by calling 1-800-621-FEMA. Federal and state officials are also busy establishing Disaster Relief Centers for people to register in person and to inquire about other areas of assistance they may need. State emergency management officials will provide information as to the locations of these centers in the next couple of days. ###


PS Clean Air Agency reports quality suffering during power outage
Posted By Sheri Badger on Dec 18th, 2006 at 9:01 AM

Puget Sound Clean Air Agency 110 Union Street, Suite 500, Seattle, WA 98101 206-343-8800 or 1-800-552-3565

Air quality in our region is deteriorating, apparently due to many people needing to use wood stoves and fireplaces to stay warm. So if your power is on, please avoid wood burning if you can for the next few days.

Our region has uncharacteristically high air pollution levels given our current weather pattern. We believe these levels are a result of the widespread power outages in the area with more people than normal using wood stoves and fireplaces as their only source of heat. We are forecasting moderate air quality for most areas but unhealthy for sensitive groups in neighborhoods where power is out.

Normally, we would call a burn ban at these pollution levels, but we recognize that this is an emergency and people need to do whatever they can to stay warm. If you need to heat with wood, please remember to use dry wood and burn small, hot fires to maximize heat and minimize smoke.


Tacoma Power Customers Have Additional Contact Phone Numbers
Posted By Sheri Badger on Dec 18th, 2006 at 7:55 AM

Tacoma, WA – December 18, 2006 – Tacoma Power has restored power to all but approximately 3,000 customers. Crews will continue to assess and repair damaged lines and equipment to restore power to those customers as soon as possible. The utility asks its customers to assist with damage assessment by following the directions below. Call 253-502-8602 if: – Your power is out. Although crews have surveyed the service area, there may still be some unknown outages. – You see power poles or lines down or you see trees or branches on lines Call 253-502-8277 if: – The power line that runs from the pole to your house is damaged – The weatherhead (pole on top of your house that connects to the power line) or your meter is damaged – You need an electrical inspection because you have repaired damage to the weatherhead or power meter at your house Customers without power can reduce problems by: – Unplugging non-essential appliances and other electrical items such as holiday lights, heaters, microwaves and coffee pots – Plugging appliances directly into generators. Generators should not be plugged into wall sockets. – Staggering the times for plugging in appliances and other electrical equipment after power is restored