Preparing For RAGBRAI Emergencies Focus Of Training

Local and area emergency agencies reviewed how they would respond in the event of a severe weather event during the RAGBRAI visit in July. (submitted image)

Local and area emergency agencies reviewed how they would respond in the event of a severe weather event during the RAGBRAI visit in July. (submitted image)

Oskaloosa, Iowa – Bicycle riders and their support personnel will be descending on Oskaloosa at the end of July. With the size of Oskaloosa being more than doubled that night, being prepared for what to do in case of an emergency becomes all the more complicated.

Tuesday, emergency personnel worked a scenario based upon a severe weather incident and how emergency services would respond.

The training scenario started out by a warning that had been issued in a neighboring county during the evening, a time when, potentially, the most riders would be within the city.

During the training, emergency workers trained on how to start preparing and getting the word out to individuals about the impending weather, and how to find and move people to the shelter locations.

Mahaska County Emergency Manager Jamey Robinson explained, “Looking at our plans in place and plans that we still need to develop. We’re going to do what, where, when, how and why.”

Those training scenarios like the one conducted on Tuesday help those like Robinson find inefficiencies and gaps in coverage.

Some of the groups that took part on Tuesday included representatives from CERT, Oskaloosa Fire, Oskaloosa Police, Mahaska Health Partnership, Mahaska County Sheriffs, Mahaska 911 Center, Iowa Homeland Security, and some nearby counties. Those nearby counties would be called for assistance in the event of a major catastrophic event.

One item that came up was adding the NIXLE information to the Oskaloosa RAGBRAI webpage “because people can sign up for it when they come in, and when they leave, they can just text ‘stop’ to that number and they won’t receive those messages anymore,” Robinson explained.

Mahaska County currently utilizes the NIXLE system to automatically warn area residents who have signed up with the service.

You can easily sign up for the NIXLE system now using your mobile phone by texting mcema to 888777. If you want to learn more about the NIXLE system, you can read more on the Mahaska County Emergency Management website HERE – http://www.mahaskaready.com/Nixle.html

RAGBRAI comes to Oskaloosa on July 25th, 2013.

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Posted by on May 1 2013. Filed under Local News. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. Responses are currently closed, but you can trackback from your own site.

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