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February 11, 1988|JACK JONES | From Staff and Wire Reports

There were only about 20 people at an earthquake preparedness seminar at the rebuilt Olive View Medical Center in Sylmar Tuesday evening--the 17th anniversary of the big quake that destroyed the hospital.

There was no apparent nervousness or foreboding of imminent doom on the part of those attending, said Ollie Blanning, aide to county Supervisor Mike Antonovich, who has staged a series of such meetings to tell folks what they can do to protect themselves and their families.

" 'Quietly interested' is probably a good description," she said.

Some of the seminars have attracted as many as 100 people, she said, and "at least we hear back that people actually went out and maybe bought a radio or a first-aid kit. They are realizing that, 'Hey, there's something I can do. . . .' "

Nor did a Reseda outfit find much panic out there as a result of last October's Whittier quake. Plog Research Inc., which said its study was financed by the University of Tokyo's Institute of Journalism and Communication Studies, reported that the "response of those closest to the epicenter is surprisingly cavalier."

Although 66% of those living within two miles of the epicenter were "very frightened" by the quake, 76% declared that they had no subsequent feelings of stress or health problems as a result of the quake, the study found.

Also, said Plog, only 5% say they are considering moving from California, only 17% have earthquake insurance and only 11% say they plan to buy some.

The report was based on a telephone survey of 305 residents.

Sheriff's Deputy John Rogers got out of his patrol car to help break up a dog fight in the San Gabriel Valley community of Valinda early Wednesday, only to find one of the combatants--a pit bull terrier--turning on him.

The pit bull had been mauling a German shepherd being walked by area resident Art Ramirez. Rogers pulled his gun and fired six rounds, killing the unleashed pit bull. The deputy and Ramirez then took the latter's German shepherd to an animal clinic, where it was reported badly hurt.

The attacking dog, said Sheriff's Information Bureau Deputy Van Mosley, "appeared to be a stray" without identification tag or license.

The incident prompted Mosley to observe that a pit bull ran toward him recently when he was walking his own dog, but "he was a friendly guy and just wanted to play."

Most Los Angeles city employees got slips in their Wednesday pay envelopes inviting them to give up part of their lunchtime Feb. 23 to take brooms to the Civic Center area as part of Operation Clean Sweep.

"A lot of fun," predicted Chris Ung of the mayor's office.

For a while Wednesday, a crestfallen Ung concluded that the invitation had not been distributed--but then learned that everyone outside the mayor's office apparently got one. The Public Works Department figures that at least 100 of its people will participate, Ung said. She guessed that there should be about 200 volunteers altogether.

As noted in the public prints before, helium-filled metallic balloons have been causing a lot of trouble by lodging themselves in power lines.

Lights out.

The approach of St. Valentine's Day has now prompted Southern California Edison Co. executives to remind balloon lovers to keep a tight hold on their string. Last year, said Bob Bridenbecker, vice president of customer service, the company had four balloon-caused outages on Valentine's Day. There were three in 1986.

"It spoils our day when that happens," Bridenbecker said.

Progress note: The bill by Assemblyman Mike Roos (D-Los Angeles) to exempt the Hollywood Roosevelt swimming pool from state health laws prohibiting paintings on the bottom and sides of pools moved ahead Wednesday when the Assembly Health Committee voted 10 to 1 to send it to the Ways and Means Committee.

The bill would save artist David Hockney's underwater mural, which has been ordered painted over by March 15.

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