Friday, February 16, 2018

Legislature return brings Emergency Preparedness reminder from MLA Rice

North Coast MLA's first comments for the new session of the Legislature
provided for a review of the recent Tsunami alert for British Columnbia

The return to the Legislature this week provided North Coast MLA Jennifer Rice to take to her position as Parliamentary Secretary for Emergency Preparedness, with her first speaking opportunity for the new session, one of a reminder on Tsunami awareness in B.C.

In a statement to the House in the Morning session for Thursday, Ms Rice recounted the recent Tsunami Alert of January 23rd as well as a similar earthquake event in Haida Gwaii of six years ago, her speech for the most part culled from an essay the MLA posted to Facebook in late January.

The main takeaway from the two minute statement for members, was the call for British Columbians to be take note of last month's alert as a wake up call and one that represented the ultimate training exercise.

She noted for the Legislature that while the Province oversees the Emergency Management program and coordinates at the provincial level, the decision to issue a tsunami alert is up to municipalities.

That has made for a system that would appear to find differing standards and approaches as to how to alert residents from community to community across the province.

"It is local government that decides whether to activate a tsunami alert, and no alerting system is fail safe, people turn off their phones,  they sleep heavily, the don't watch TV, or like me they can't necessarily tell the difference between a vibrating dance floor and an earthquake"

The MLA's review of the recent Tsunami alert came following a fair bit of discussion around the North Coast about the need for better communication for such alerts and what steps could be taken to improve on the notification process in the region.

Tsunami 101 with MLA Rice
Council's Tsunami Alert Review: One part history lesson, one part look to the future
After Tuesday's Alaska quake: Seismic aftershocks continue in Kodiak, while political aftershocks continue to rumble across the North Coast

The transcript of her notes for the Legislature can be examined from the pages of Hansard for the Thursday Morning session starting at the 10 minute after 10 AM point.

You can review her accounts of earthquakes and tsunami alerts past and present from the Legislature video below.

For more items of note related to the MLA's work in Victoria see our archive page here.

A wider overview of the Victoria political scene can be found on our D'Arcy McGee blog.

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