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Oregon ARES/RACES SETs and Exercises

Each year, Oregon ARES/RACES, conducts two Simulated Emergency Tests (SETS); a spring SET in April
and a fall SET in October/November. Over the past few years, SET scenarios themes have been related
to volcanic eruptions, tsunamis, earthquakes, windstorms, floods and downed aircraft. These SETs are
full-scale exercises which provide realistic training experience and a functional test of the county units’
abilities to provide auxiliary emergency communications for served agencies.

This years spring SET is “QuakeEX I”, building up to 2016 FEMA Cascadia Rising Exercise.

 

Scenario

This SET will include the loss of operational communications capability and the need to rely on auxiliary communication resources. Science suggests that large 8.0 – 9.0 CSZ earthquake rip across the 800 mile CSZ fault line once every 200 to 500 years. The last occurred in 1700. These are catastrophic events that are likely to severely disrupt normal communications. The SET Scenario will closely follow the real FEMA Cascadia Subduction Zone (CSZ) Scenario document available on the OregonARESRACES.org website.

Objectives

The objective of this SET is to train ARES/RACES radio operators in disaster communications, net operations and message handling under the extreme conditions that might occur following a Cascadia Subduction Zone (CSZ) M9 earthquake. Participating groups will: (a) Organize county-level communications involving as many AuxComm groups as possible, develop a communications plan (ICS-205) and hold pre-SET coordination briefings. This means that you should make arrangements for members of served agencies such as CERT, MARS, the Red Cross, Salvation Army and your county emergency manager to be physically present at your EOC during the drill and to actually write responses to the message traffic you will receive from OEM. (b) Exchange drill traffic with other participating groups. Besides the traffic to and from the state, you should be exchanging traffic between adjacent counties and other agencies as would be required during an actual event. You are responsible for writing this traffic. (c) Hold post-SET “hot wash” debriefing nets and meetings which include the above agency participants. (f) Submit an After Action Report to the ARES/RACEs SET Coordinator, the ASEC for Training and the SEC. This SET will include a simulation cell (SIMCELL) of Oregon ARES/RACES Leadership staff that will direct SET play and respond to incoming traffic from the County EOCs via HF SSB and Winlink. They will also inject SET directives and respond to traffic generated by the County EOCs. SET “Run-Up” traffic to the County EOCs will start on April 18th, 2015. The SIMCELL will be writing traffic to each participating county. The content of the traffic will vary by zone and will be prepared prior to the SET. The objective of this SET is to test Oregon ARES/RACES ability to assist with Cascadia Rising Emergency Support Function 2 (ESF-2) Operational Communications should we be activated. Other objectives include: 1. Apply “lessons learned” from earlier exercises 2. Improve two-way traffic flow between participating groups using RF, peer-to-peer modes 3. Interact with other groups that will be active during a disaster via Amateur Radio 4. Get on the air, exercise emergency power equipment and field station setup 5. Practice the deployment and operational of ODOT STR “Dropbox” equipment in the field. To foster working relationship with our Emergency Managers statewide, we encouraged ARES County Emergency Coordinators to invite their Managers to participate. This SET is also designed to encourage AuxComm groups to work together and build relationships that will be needed should an activation occur.

F0r more info on how to participate contact your county ARES group.

 

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The Cascadia Subduction Zone (CSZ) earthquake and tsunami is one of the most complex disaster scenarios that emergency management and public safety officials face in the Pacific Northwest.
Scientific evidence indicates that a magnitude 8.0-9.0 earthquake occurs along the 800-mile long CSZ fault on average once every 200 to 500 years. The last major earthquake and tsunami along the fault occurred over 300 years ago in 1700. Recent subduction zone earthquakes around the world underscore the catastrophic impacts we will face when the next CSZ earthquake and tsunami occurs in our region:
Recent Subduction Zone Earthquakes
Indonesia (2004): M9.1 — 228,000 fatalities
Chile (2010): M8.8 — 500 fatalities
Japan (2011): M9.0 — 18,000 fatalities
Conducting successful life-saving and life-sustaining response operations in the aftermath of a Cascadia Subduction Zone disaster will hinge on the effective coordination and integration of governments at all levels – cities, counties, state agencies, federal officials, the military, tribal nations – as well as non-government organizations and the private sector. One of the primary goals of Cascadia Rising is to train and test this whole community approach to complex disaster operations together as a joint team.
The culminating event will be a four-day functional exercise to occur June 7-10, 2016. Emergency Operations and Coordination Centers (EOC/ECCs) at all levels of government and the private sector will activate to coordinate simulated field response operations both within their jurisdictions and also with neighboring communities, state EOCs, FEMA, and major military commands.

 

excerpts from Oregon ARES/Races and FEMA

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