Community Emergency Preparedness Meeting: Minutes, Distributed Materials and Links

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Below are the Minutes of the November 14, 2018 BAA Emergency Preparedness Meeting for those who could not attend:


NOVEMBER 14, 2018


1.    The meeting was held at the John Thomas Dye School and attended by approximately 150 local residents.

2.    Speaker Panel:

a.    Justin Scott, Sergeant II LAPD

b.     Orin Sanders, Assistant Chief LAFD

c.    Dr. Mark Goodman, BAA Emergency Preparedness Chair, BAA liaison for LAPD & LAFD

d.    Chris Ragsdale, Senior Lead Officer LAPD

e.    Margaret Vinci, Caltech Seismology, office of Earthquake Programs

f.     Gregory Martayan, (213) 505-8420, CD5 Director of Public Safety & Special Assignments

3.    Dr. Mark Goodman & BAA Executive Director Shawn Bayliss re Updates:

a.    The BAA hosted a CERT Training Class—will host more in future and strongly encourages everyone to attend (especially Sector team captains)

b.    The Bel-Air Association divided its area into Sectors and recruited two Team Captains per sector.  The team captains were given a list of the homes in their sectors and instructed to obtain contain information for every home contained on their respective list. All homeowners should expect to be contacted by their respective team captains and BAA strongly encourages everyone to provide the information requested by their team captain.  In case of emergency, the captains will contact everybody on the list to make sure they are fine and update them with information obtained from the BAA/ Dr. Goodman

c.    The team captains in each Sector will receive a walkie talkie on November 27that the In & Out Burger event at the BAA

d.    The BAA is working on accomplishing the placement of the Fire Penalty No Smoking Signs and Red Flag Warning Signs. (Having the signs list a penalty allows police to immediately impose sanctions on violations.)

e.    Red Flag Warning signs are extremely important in our area—please contact the BAA if you see a car in violation.

f.     The BAA has a team of residents of CERT and HAM operators already that they developed over the last year. The BAA encourages other residents to contact the BAA to take the classes and join the team.

g.    The most important fire safety we can all do in our community is brush clearance and clean our gutters

h.    At Dr. Goodman’s request, SOS Survival Products https://www.sosproducts.comand Blue Can Water http://www.bluecanwater.comwill return a percentage of their proceeds from Bel Air sales to the Emergency preparedness Fund for the Association....please indicate you are ordering from the BAA Event when you order on-line.  [These companies both attended the event and the BAA was impressed with both their knowledge and products for sale.]


4.    Margaret Vinci (Earthquakes)

a.    Drop, Cover, and Hold On: During earthquake shaking immediately drop, crawl to get under something and hold on to whatever you are under

b.    The houses have to be bolt to the foundations by adding anchor bolts.   See

c.    Look at  website that tells you what earthquake zone your house is located

d.    Water:    All the pipes in LA are 100 years old, they will all break.   We must have water stored in our home enough to last for two-three weeks--one gallon per person per day.   “Blue Can” water has a 50-year shelf life. Do not use pool water to drink.  You can use the water from the water heater tank but make sure it is secured to the wall. 

e.    Phones:  we need to have a solar charger in the house.   The cells will not be operational for very long so it is very important to keep a land line.  

f.     Emergency Contact:  Choose one emergency contact outside of LA:  write the number of the back of your phone because during emergency, we do not remember anything.

g.    Gas: Turn off the gas valve only if it is leaking.   If it is not leaking, leave it on, as it will take weeks or more before the gas company turns it on again.   You have to know where the gas meter is. Keep a heavy wrench tied to gas meter. 

h.    House should have 3 in 1 fire extinguishers (aim low at fire, squeeze, and sweep back and forth), duct tape, cash, mask, goggles, radio, strong scissors, thick gloves. 

i.     Under the bed: everybody needs to have one small bag with thick shoes (to walk uninjured on broken glass), flashlights, a whistle, crowbar. 

j.     Make sure to secure: water heater, tall furniture/bookcases, TVs, computers, electronics, kitchen cabinets, wall-mounted objects, objects on open shelves/table tops, natural gas appliances, propane tanks, unreinforced masonry chimney, kitchen appliances, gym equipment, etc.

k.    Make sure able to open the front gate without electricity.

l.     Don’t stand in a door frame unless no door—otherwise you will get hit by swinging door during quake.

m.  If in car, pull over and set parking brake

n.    Seven Steps to Earthquake Safety:

Step 1 - Identify Hazards in the Home: 

Step 2 - Create Your Disaster Plan:  

Step 3 - Create Disaster Supply Kits.

Step 4 -Identify Your Home's Potential Weaknesses. 

Step 5 - Drop, Cover, and Hold On.  

Step 6 - After the Shaking Stops Check for Damages and Injuries Needing Immediate Attention

Step 7 - When Safe Follow Your Disaster Plan


5.    Chief Orin Sanders (Fire)

a.    Earthquake tips above apply to fire.

b.    The Most Important Thing Every Homeowner Can Do To Help LAFD:  BRUSH CLEARANCE(he kept emphasizing how important this is to stop the fire from spreading—he suggested 200 feet brush clearance)

c.    Many homeowners complained that they live near other homes which are in violation of the brush clearance but they have no recourse. Gregory Martayan, Director of Public Safety at Councilmember Koretz’ office said to contact their office at (323) 866-1828 and provide them with the address and description of the brush clearance violation and they will immediately commence the compliance process.  

d.    Installing attic spark arrestors (mesh that should prevent sparks entering attic) are very important to prevent flying embers from entering attic.  (Many homes catch on fire due to flying embers entering the attic.) 

e.    He suggested keeping flammable items away from the home structure, and lawn furniture away from under the eaves

f.     Re: roofing materials—clay materials are best.

g.    Keep pools open for fire department to use if needed. 

h.    Do not leave on your sprinklers because it lessens the water pressure for the LAFD

i.     There is a commercial flame retardant that you can spray on house but it only lasts 24-48 hours.

j.     Always have a to-go bag ready

k.    Sign up for Notify LA at get evacuation orders and update texted to your phone

l.     They try to give you at least 60-90 minute warning re evacuation

m.  There is no stopping a wind driven fire. Evacuate as soon as possible!!



How prepared are you? Take the EMERGENCY PREPAREDNESS QUIZ

Earthquake Country Alliance interactive website - with interactive faultline map, etc.

Earthquake Country Alliance PDF '“Staying Safe Where The Earth Shakes”

LAPD “Lock It! Hide It! Keep It!”

Sign-up for Alerts with the LA Notification System

Before an Evacuation - readiness tips


12 Steps to Prepare

Evacuation Check-list

Under the Bed Kit

SOS November 2018 catalog — also visit website at

Special thanks for Jamie Meyer for the Minutes and materials.