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E-Media Kit - Environmental Emergency Responders Plan for Major San Francisco Bay Area Earthquake

Release Date: 09/15/2009
Contact Information: Mary Simms, (415) 947-4270/ simms.mary@epa.gov or Angela Blanchette, (510) 540-3732/ ablanche@dtsc.ca.gov


”Great State Shake” Media Kit

As the exercise unfolds, photos will uploaded each day. To download photos, please visit: http://www.epaosc.org/site/image_list.aspx?site_id=5389&counter=88650

SAN FRANCISCO -- Emergency response officials from California, Alaska, Arizona, Colorado, Nevada, Washington and multiple federal and state agencies have spent nearly a year planning to test their response to the Bay Area’s worst nightmare and most likely natural disaster -- a catastrophic earthquake with devastating environmental implications.

"A catastrophic earthquake on the west coast is not a question of if, it's a question of when," said Superfund Division Director Keith Takata. "This exercise is time well spent to practice how we would respond to such an incident."

As part of the drill, the earthquake will simulate the loss of and damage to major infrastructure resources in the Bay Area. Major bridges, drinking water supplies, wastewater treatment facilities, and chemical and radiological facilities will all potentially be impacted. As part of the exercise, field reconnaissance teams will deploy to test and strengthen emergency response skills.

"During a disaster it is vital that all state and federal agencies collaborate together to minimize the environmental threats in California brought on by a natural disaster,” said Department of Toxic Substances Control Director Maziar Movassaghi. “This exercise is a valuable training tool to better support and protect public health and the environment from toxic harm. All too often this has been an afterthought resulting in temporary, band-aid solutions as opposed to preventative, proactive measures."

This disaster drill will span multiple locations and the earthquake will result in compounded simulated emergencies. The scenario will begin with a devastating 6.8 magnitude earthquake along the northern end of California’s Hayward Fault, affecting Contra Costa and Alameda Counties. A series of additional complications stemming from the natural disaster will challenge the skills and resources of hundreds of emergency, public safety, transportation and public health officials.

As the exercise unfolds, photos will uploaded each day. To download photos, please visit: http://www.epaosc.org/site/image_list.aspx?site_id=5389&counter=88650

Additional Info

The scenario will be a 6.8 – magnitude earthquake along the northern end of California’s Hayward Fault affecting Contra Costa and Alameda Counties. The focus of the exercise will be communications and logistics coordination within the first 24 to 72 hours. Specifically, the exercise will test our ability to:

          Deploy regional resources (actual deployment from Southern California, Denver, Seattle)
          Coordinate response of resources (including sharing of intra-regional and inter-regional equipment and supplies, as well as formulation of partial Incident Management Teams composed of various federal agency personnel from multiple regions)
          Development of situational awareness (and reporting such back through chain of command)
          Setup and use of communications systems (simulating a major loss of infrastructure)
          Coordination of logistics (from a centralized hub and possibly including coordination of contractor services – including helicopter transport/reconnaissance)
          Data capture of field incidents and dissemination between operational areas, regions, and command posts.
PARTICIPATING AGENCIES
      USEPA - R8, R9, R10;
      USEPA - ERT (Las Vegas);
      USCG – Pacific Strike Team;
      State of California, DTSC

The scenario will be a 6.8 – magnitude earthquake along the northern end of California’s Hayward Fault. The focus of the exercise will be communications and logistics coordination within the first 24 to 72 hours. Specifically, the exercise will test our ability to:
          Deploy regional, backup and special team resources (equipment & personnel);
          Coordinate response of resources (including sharing of intra-regional and inter-regional equipment and supplies, as well as formulation of partial Incident Management Teams composed of various federal agency personnel from multiple regions);
          Development of situational awareness (and reporting such back through chain of command);
          Setup and use of communications systems (simulating a major loss of infrastructure);
          Coordination of logistics (from a centralized hub and possibly including coordination of contractor services – including transport/reconnaissance);
          Demonstrate the ability to transfer data & information back and forth within the region and across regions effectively and efficiently in a manner consistent with urgent response operations.


Summary of Exercise Play
    The exercise will be held in real time, commencing at 0630 hours Pacific Time on Monday September 14, 2009, and run through Thursday September 17th at 1200 hrs.
    Daily operational periods will run from 0800 to approximately 1700 hrs.
    Region 10 will mobilize their MCP and players in real-time from Seattle and/or Portland.
    ERT players will mobilize in real time from Las Vegas.
    Pacific Strike Team (PST) players will mobilize in real time from their duty station.
    State players will mobilize from Sacramento.

Initial information provided the players, injects, and information provided from the SIMCELL will guide the direction of play as follows:

Day 1

All operations (Staging, Incident Command) are expected to take place at the Staging Area until alternate locations are established. It is expected that activities at this venue will devolve over the course of the first two days of play until only staging operations are being conducted here by the end of Day 2.

Day 2

All personnel complete mobilization and begin preparations for operational deployment:
    Set-up & test communications equipment and establish communication protocols;
    Establish resource inventory control and tracking;
    Verify MCP system functionality after mobilization;
    Establish logistics plan for ordering resources, track costs, and begin cost projections for rapid needs;
    Process HazMat/oil spill report information to formulate situational awareness;
    Command Staff develop and begin operational missions. Based on spill report information, players are to determine two field operational areas (OA);
    Possible boat/aerial survey of shoreline near refineries, pipelines
    Establishing a process for data management

Day 3
    Each OA deploys field teams to gather information and or data on incident information received. Observations and data are relayed back to the ICP. Based on information from Day 2/3, locations of the ICP and OAs might move to other locations. The Teams will utilize Response Manager to process field data on the incidents and situational awareness.

Day 4

OA field teams conduct limited assessments and continue information gathering. Observations and data are relayed back to the ICP. Situational awareness and incident data are to be captured in Response Manager and used to complete SitRep for the operational period.

Day 5

Personnel to travel home.


Exercise Venues

Venue 1 – Staging Area
This venue location will be initially pre-arranged (artificiality) for the exercise in Sacramento, CA.

Venue 2 – ICP
Exercise play should lead players to possibly set up an initial Incident Command Post (ICP), and then possibly relocate it later in the exercise. The initial ICP could be in the Staging Area, or at a location selected by the players (TBD).

Venue 3 – Operational Area (OA) A (TBD)

Venue 4 – Operational Area B (TBD)
These venues will utilize the MCPs mobilized for play. Location of deployment is dependant on exercise play; however, it is anticipated that injects will lead players to set up operational areas.



Day 1 EX Scenarios that participant will respond to (all in am time):
6:30
STARTEX - Description of earthquake, affected areas/counties, and power outage locations.
6:31
Supervisory Control and Data Acquisition (SCADA) Alert received from Kinder Morgan - An earthquake alert was recorded at 0630 hours for pipeline systems in Alameda, Contra Costa, San Francisco, San Joaquin, San Mateo, Santa Clara and Solano counties.
6:31
Alameda Co OES reports large earthquake occurred at 0630 hours - will update State Warning Center (SWC) as information on damage is received.
6:31
CNN and local radio report - "A large earthquake has just occurred in the San Francisco Bay Area."
6:32
"Contra Costa, Santa Clara, San Mateo, and San Francisco Co OES report large earthquake."
6:33
"Solano, Marin, Napa, Sonoma, San Joaquin (and other) counties report earthquake."
6:33
" The FOC (FEMA Operations Center, formerly the National Warning Center) reports that an earthquake has occurred in the Northern California/Bay Area affecting Alameda, Contra Costa, Marin, San Francisco, San Joaquin, San Mateo, Santa Clara, Solano and Sonoma counties."
6:35
"The FOC received the following message from the Alaska Tsunami Warning Center (TWC) - "This is a tsunami information message, no action required. A severe earthquake, preliminary magnitude 6-point-8, occurred at 0630 hours Pacific Daylight Time on September 14 , in Oakland, California. An investigation is underway to determine if a tsunami has been generated. Additional bulletins will be issued hourly, or sooner, as information becomes available."
6:40
"Alameda County has declared a local emergency and requested a gubernatorial declaration. Reports of specific damage and requests for assistance will be forthcoming."
6:40
" The FOC received confirmation of the earthquake from both the National Earthquake Information Center and the UC Berkeley Seismic Station - earthquake 6.8 magnitude on the Hayward Fault occurred at 06:30 hours; epicenter in Oakland at 37 50" 39.23" N, 122 13' 39.10" W"
6:42
CNN reports - "The National Earthquake Information Center has confirmed a magnitude 6.8 earthquake on the Hayward fault. The epicenter of the quake was Oakland, CA. Reports of widespread damage to bridges and roads throughout the Bay Area are coming in. Power and water service are reported to be out in many areas."
6:45
"The following counties have declared local emergencies and requested a gubernatorial declaration: Contra Costa, Santa Clara, San Francisco, Solano, San Mateo, and Marin. These counties and Alameda County report that all Fire/Hazmat resources are responding to life threatening/public safety emergencies."
6:45
Land-line phone service/DSL and cable non-operational for major impact areas and cell service is severely compromised (towers damaged/down) for Alameda, San Francisco, San Mateo, Santa Clara and Contra Costa counties. Land-line phones service severely impacted/overloaded in other Bay Area counties with emergency calls only allowed in areas impacted but still operational; cell service operational but severely overloaded. Contact is possible via text messaging and Twitter in many areas where cell servcie is non-operable.
6:50
EPA HQ EOC activated.
6:50
What can you tell us about the situation out there? Are your offices accessible? What response resources do you have? Are you aware of any releases at this point? Have you been requested to provide any assistance to state/local agencies?
7:00
Emergency Alert System (EAS) Announcement - "The public is requested to stay off of the road system. Emergency vehicles only on the roads."
7:00
"CalTrans reports that all Bay Area bridges - the Bay, Carquinez, Dumbarton, Golden Gate, Richmond-San Rafael, and San Mateo bridges, have been closed to all traffic. Emergency crews are in route to begin structural inspections. CalTrans may open some bridges for emergency traffic by noon." "BART reports that their system has been shut down. All trains were stopped immediately after the earthquake. There are reports from train operators of visible damage to elevated sections of BART track/stations." "All Bay Area airports are closed. Runway damage is reported at SFO, OAK and SJ airports. All inbound flights to those airports are being re-routed to alternate airports."
7:00
"DC HQ (Tom Dunn equivalent) called and wants to know what the situation out here is. What resources do we have? What do we need?
7:00
An earthquake (details) has occurred in the San Francisco Bay Area. The R9 SF office and Regional lab in Richmond are closed. The regional may/will be contacting R8 for response resources."
7:00
An earthquake (details) has occurred in the San Francisco Bay Area. The R9 SF office and Regional lab in Richmond are closed. The regional may/will be contacting R10 for response resources."
7:10
"All airports in Bay Area closed, flights being re-routed; BART and other public transit systems are not operating."
7:10
DTSC activates DOC in Sacramento. CALEPA activates EOC at CALEPA building.
7:15
Chevron, Richmond reports emergency shutdown of refinery due to power loss and loss of steam.; flares were overwhelmed. Smoke, partially burned hydrocarbons, and sulfur compounds being released. Sirens and the Community Alert Network (CAN) have been activated.
7:30
The cell phone systems in the following Bay Area locations - Alameda County, San Francisco County; central, eastern and northern Santa Clara County; Contra Costa County, western San Mateo County; southern Marin County; and western Solano County - are overloaded; there is no service for outgoing calls and incoming calls are getting busy signals. Messages left on cell phones prior to this time are no longer retrievable.
7:30
CAL EMA requests DTSC support.
7:30
EBMUD reports (to CA OES) damage to water delivery and treatment systems. Three of six treatment plant out of service between Berkeley and Hayward and may have releases. Estimates over 50% of their 1.3M customers will have no water service. Deploying team to check damage at dams and reservoirs (Briones, Temascal, Upper San Leandro, Calaveras and Lafayette). Wastewater treatment plant for Berkeley and Oakland is shut down.
7:35
ConocoPhillips, Rodeo reports tank fire at fuel farm. Sirens and CAN activated; smoke impacting communities of Crockett, Rodeo, and Tormey -residents advised to shelter-in-place CP Fire Department on-scene. Fire contained to one tank.
7:35
" Here are updates on road closures. I-580 is closed west of Tracy and south of Marin; I- 680/24 junction closed, I-680 from x to y; I-880 closed from xx to yy; I-80 closed west of Hercules; I-101 closed from Silver Avenue to Millbrae exit and from xx to yy; Hwys 24 and 13 are closed."
7:40
SFPUC reports damage to water delivery and treatment systems affecting over 50% of their 2.4M customers. Water supply pipelines that traverse the Hayward Fault and cross the SF Bay are damaged, as are distribution pipelines at the margins of the Bay.
7:45
Controller will give ERS Chief list of personnel not able to respond (non-players). If players have not called in their status, the Controller will prompt the ERS Chief to call them.
7:45
Muni and AC Transit are not operating - damage to surface streets and debris blocking routes.
8:00
"I was unable to get to warehouse, all the roads are closed due to damage.
8:00
If transfer of the R9 Spill Phone (to R8 or another location) has not already occurred, a Controller will inject - "The NRC has reported diffculty in passing reports to R9; until communications issues are resolved HQ recommends that R9 Spill Phone be routed to a phone outside the Bay Area."
8:00
News reports smoke and/or chemical plumes from several refineries (Chevron, Richmond; Tesoro golden Eagle and Conoco Phillips, Rodeo).
8:00
Tesoro Golden Eagle Refinery reports - refinery shut down due to power failure sent large quantities of hydrocarbon to the flares. Most smoke drifting straight up with some drifting over North Concord.
8:05
If R9 has not yet requested resources from R8, then a Controller will inject - "R8 Removal Manager (or Branch Chief) wants to know what resources R9 needs and when you need them."
8:30
If R9 has not yet requested resources from R10, then a Controller will inject - "R10 Removal Manager (or Branch Chief) wants to know what resources R9 needs and when you need them."
8:30
DTSC contacting R9 DO to share info, and obtain status on situation.
9:00
" What do you have? What are your unknowns? What do you need? What are you doing to get what you need? What do you want me to do? I need to brief HQ every 2 hours, minimum. When are you going to have maps or other release information?"
9:30
Has EPA contacted you regarding resources?
9:30
Numerous smoke clouds reported via Radio. Continuous coverage in SoCA, Central Valley. National coverage routine.
10:00
DTSC identifies field resources available to deploy. 4 from Sacto, 30 Tech Specs from SoCal. DTSC offers services of the mobile lab if it is needed. DTSC test communication equipment in the field, i.e. satellite phones. DTSC OSC's also can provide monitoring equipment resources if requested.
10:00
Do not make hotel reservations - these will be provided
10:30
Calls into Spill Phone (phone should be transferred by now) - 3-4 routine calls will be simulated, 2-3 reports related to earthquake will be fed in as injects over the next few hours.
10:30
If discussion about IMT needs/resources hasn't occurred - Have you identified IMT positions you will need?
11:00
R9 SoCal and NV OSCs should be in route and periodically reporting progress to DO/IC via Sat Phone. R8 and R10 should be periodically reporting in to R9 DO/IC on status of mobilizing resources.
11:00
If Controllers have not seen DTSC bring up regulated facilities already "Contra Costa County EOC requests State assistance with checking status of regulated facilities."
11:00
If DO, ERS Chief or IC haven't discussed this and other players haven't yet asked - "RIC wants to know response status, where will staging area be (Provide Staging Area and Hotel, as established by Ex. Director)."
11:10
Informational/artificiality - Provide staging area location and information that only one night accommodations have been made.
11:30
If RIC or other has not called Takada to brief him: "I'd like an update."
11:30
All bridges remain closed. BB, Richmond-SR closed to all traffic - all other bridges emergency vehicles only allowed.
12:00
DO/IC continues receiving information/reports and ranks/re-ranks.
13:00
Personnel and resources should be arriving in Staging Area. Responding OSC/IC would be providing list of resources in play or RESL should obtain the list from responding OSC/IC. Resource Unit Leader Identified By End of Day 1 OR provide resources in play and in route.
14:00
Provide update on status of response resources and situational awareness. What IMT/RC personnel are responding?
14:00
15:00
If players haven't provided - R9 IMT and other staff Out-of-Play List provided
15:00
15:30
Aftershock
17:00
Set up Formal Check-in Process and resource ordering.
18:00
END OF PLAY - DAY 1