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Emergency Preparedness

January 10, 2007 | Sharon Bernstein, Times Staff Writer
When the great Ft. Tejon earthquake ripped the San Andreas fault 150 years ago this week, the shaking was so powerful it shook the Kern River from its banks and for a moment made it run upstream, according to accounts from the day. If such a quake occurred today -- and scientists say we are overdue for one in Southern California -- it would cause $150 billion or more in damage, disrupt water and power supplies for Los Angeles and pancake buildings from San Bernardino to the L.A. Basin.
January 3, 2007 | Carol J. Williams, Times Staff Writer
Frustrated with people and politicians who refuse to listen or learn, National Hurricane Center Director Max Mayfield ends his 34-year government career today in search of a new platform for getting out his unwelcome message: Hurricane Katrina was nothing compared with the big one yet to come. Mayfield, 58, leaves his high-profile job with the National Weather Service more convinced than ever that U.S.
January 2, 2007 | Sam Howe Verhovek, Times Staff Writer
Amid reports that poor communication and missed tips might have hampered the search for James Kim and his family in the southern Oregon wilderness, Oregon Gov. Ted Kulongoski has ordered three state agencies to review the search process, and said he would appoint a task force to improve search-and-rescue efforts. A state sheriffs' organization also is conducting a review, as are federal agencies in charge of the land where Kim and his family were lost.
December 29, 2006 | From the Associated Press
A few seconds of undersea quaking was all it took to cause massive telecommunications disruptions throughout tech-savvy Asia, where Internet services slowed or stopped, phone lines went dead and financial transactions ground to a halt.
December 17, 2006 | Jane Engle, Times Staff Writer
The ordeal of the Kim family of Northern California, who got lost in the Oregon mountains Nov. 25 after taking a wrong turn, is a grim reminder that road trips can turn treacherous. James Kim died; his wife and two children stayed behind and were rescued. Here are some items that experts say you should take when driving any distance from home. Map: The more detailed and updated, the better. Scope out at least one alternate route before departing.
December 13, 2006 | Rong-Gong Lin II, Times Staff Writer
California is among the states least prepared for a deadly pandemic flu or other health disaster, according to a national report card released Tuesday by a Washington, D.C.-based nonprofit organization. Forty-six states ranked higher than California, which the report said would run out of hospital beds within two weeks during a moderate pandemic flu outbreak.
September 14, 2006 | Evan Halper, Times Staff Writer
A state audit released this week warns that California's efforts to prepare for a terrorist attack or natural disaster are being undermined by a morass of red tape. State Auditor Elaine M. Howle says in the report that the administration of Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger has let tens of millions of dollars in federal emergency preparedness grants languish unspent and has not adequately tested the ability of California's medical facilities to handle mass casualties.
September 13, 2006 | From Reuters
New York has signed a $500-million contract with Northrop Grumman Corp. to build a high-speed wireless data network for emergency services. The Citywide Mobile Wireless Network would give police and firefighters responding to emergency situations high-speed data access to share information such as federal and state anti-terrorism databases, fingerprints, mug shots, maps and video, the statement said.
September 9, 2006 | Patrick McGreevy, Times Staff Writer
The Los Angeles Police Department should assign officers overseas as liaisons to foreign law enforcement and intelligence agencies so it can obtain leads on potential terrorist plots affecting the city, according to a panel of civic leaders appointed by Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa.
September 2, 2006 | From Times Wire Reports
There is no evidence Federal Aviation Administration officials intentionally misled the Sept. 11 commission when they gave false accounts about how quickly they responded to the terror attacks, according to a new report. The findings by the Department of Transportation's acting inspector general, Todd J. Zinser, address a lingering question about the response on Sept. 11 by military and civilian aviation officials, who initially portrayed the reaction as swift and efficient.
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