CITIZEN CORP/EMERGENCY PLANNING COMMITTEE
Green Valley Recreation and the Green Valley Council are again working together with Green Valley Fire District and the University of Arizona to test response time of official emergency responders relative to designated individuals who can use Automated Externa. Defibrillators onsite. Santa Rita Springs has been selected as the first HOA for this testing, which will occur as early as May. This project was approved in 2017 by the Board of Green Valley Recreation and the Council became a partner during its development. But scheduling kept the project from moving ahead last year. The Chair is coordinating with GVC’s Health & Human Services Committee on the project.
Pima County Emergency Information
Pima County has set up an electronic notification system for residents of Pima County during emergency situations. Individuals may subscribe to the system for free. The following information is taken from the Pima County Office of Emergency Management, where you can find further information.
When It Matters Most!
During an emergency, urgent messaging is effective only if it reaches you quickly. Our Everbridge Mass Notification System can quickly and reliably push emergency messages to many of your electronic devices. Subscribers receive emergency alerts, instructions, and information when it counts. Go to MyAlerts.pima.gov to create a profile and start receiving notifications. Green Valley is a friendly and pleasant place to live, but its residents are cognizant of emergencies that take place on a daily basis. The objective of the Citizen Corps/Emergency Planning Committee is to provide information about safety for members of the Green Valley Community and their property.
Whatever the potential safety hazard, the most important action you can take is to “Be Aware.” Know your neighbors, know your neighborhood, and contact 911 if you are in danger.
The Citizen Corps/Emergency Planning Committee advises residents of the programs and services that they can participate in to help protect their family and friends. For example, the Committee provides a checklist of how to safeguard your property if you are going to be absent for a significant amount of time. Because Green Valley is located near the US-Mexico border, the Committee arranges annual Community Forums so that community members can learn about the latest border issues. The First Responders present informational updates to the Council’s Board of Representatives on an annual basis.
Most emergencies involve a limited number of individuals, and these emergencies are handled by trained personnel. It is when emergencies affect whole communities that situations become critical, beyond the capabilities of first response teams. Then, residents must be prepared for “what to do” to avoid panic and help emergency personnel. The planning, table exercises, and real-time testing, undertaken by the Citizen Corps/Emergency Planning Committee, enable the Committee representatives to provide information to the Green Valley community about the steps they should take if and when an emergency arises.
Natural emergencies are those caused by nature, although in the case of fire, there may be human agents at work. However they start, fires are one of the direst of emergencies, threatening life and property. Grass or range fires burn hot and burn quickly often forcing households to evacuate to safer areas. In addition to fire, there are also floods and high winds that bring their own dangers.
Floods in the Southwest are as short as they are unexpected. In just a short time, the dry riverbeds along which businesses, houses, and roads are built, can become raging torrents, and what is worse, residents of Green Valley may not realize the problem if the rain that is carried by the dry washes originates some distance away. This situation is especially prevalent during the summer monsoon rains.
High winds which often accompany rain can also damage property and harm residents who might be trapped in collapsed or flooded buildings. Microbursts, strong winds that have been clocked at 120 miles per hour, can easily overturn trailers, tear away roofs, and propel construction materials like shrapnel.
Explosions are another concern, although most are caused by human agents who have inadvertently caused a chain reaction with chemicals or other materials that are unstable or fire-prone.
This region is little troubled by earthquakes but they do happen. For example, approximately 35 miles WSW of Green Valley there is a hidden fault on the eastern flank of Baboquivari Peak. Seismic activity is measured there every 50 years or so. Tucson and Phoenix residents have also felt aftershocks from quakes that occurred several hundred miles away, depending on the magnitude of the quake.
Thus, it is best to be prepared for even the slightest chance of an emergency. Because emergency plans can often cover different types of incidents, taking extra precautions should not be burdensome.
Although most community members think in terms of natural disasters, modern conditions mean that civil emergencies are occurring more often in our society. For example,
- Civil disobedience demonstrations that turn into riots.
- Criminals who take hostages in gun battles with police.
- Mentally imbalanced individuals who for whatever reason maim and kill people randomly, often without any prior behavioral hints.
- Bomb threats
Even though Green Valley is a rural area, accounts of criminal behavior, such as theft, do appear regularly in the local news.
Current Planning Activities
The Committee has recently completed a directory of first contacts for emergency situations. Because of the necessity of 24/7 coverage and to ensure that illness or vacations do not interfere with communication, at least two (2) back-ups have been identified for each of the first contacts.
The Committee is also considering recommending that every community member and/or household have an emergency pack that is kept up-to-date with current medications, bottled water and other items essential to emergency evacuation. Recommended items will be forthcoming.