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|September is National Preparedness Month-“Don’t Wait. Communicate.”|
(MADISON) – Don’t Wait. Communicate. September is National Preparedness Month. Wisconsin Emergency Management’s ReadyWisconsin campaign says now is the perfect time to talk to everyone about getting ready for an emergency or disaster.
“The most important step you can take today is to make a plan,” said Wisconsin Emergency Management Administrator Brian Satula. “As part of National Preparedness Month, we’re encouraging families to put together a plan that includes information on where to go during an emergency and how to communicate with loved ones if separated in a crisis.”
This means having an up-to-date contact list for those you may need to reach during a disaster and establishing alternate methods of communication in case traditional means are not available.
|Wisconsin addresses response to cyber-attack on power grid|
How would utilities and state agencies respond to a massive blackout or grid failure to hit Wisconsin? That question was discussed at a national energy infrastructure security summit held July 20-22, 2015 in Washington, D.C.
As part of the Electric Infrastructure Security (EIS) Summit VI held at the U.S. Capitol, some of Wisconsin's top utility, emergency management and homeland security officials were invited to discuss Wisconsin's plans to such events. Maj. Gen. Don Dunbar, Wisconsin adjutant general and Wisconsin's Homeland Security Advisor, chaired the panel on opportunities and challenges facing Wisconsin. Joining him were Wisconsin Emergency Management Administrator Brian Satula; Mike Huebsch, commissioner with the Wisconsin Public Service Commission; and David Wojtczak with American Transmission Company (ATC).
Dunbar discussed the risks associated with cyber-attacks for the nation and the electrical power grid. In Wisconsin, the state coordinates with the private sector to develop a cyber annex to the Wisconsin Emergency Response Plan.
"State government has a clear responsibility to protect state networks and respond to cyber incidents," Dunbar said. "The Cyber Annex describes essential state requirements and tasks that are a priority in the event of a cyber disruption."
Storm Damage Report
A line of strong storms moved across southern Wisconsin Tuesday afternoon and evening. One thunderstorm may have produced a tornado near Lake Geneva around 9:15pm. Radar at the National Weather Service (NWS) in Sullivan indicated rotation in the system starting in the Lake Geneva area and intensified near Mukwonago and Big Bend. NWS officials have confirmed that the damaged was caused by a tornado.
Town of Lyons:
Significant damage reported to six buildings and minor damage to others in Lyons Industrial Park on Madaus Road at Hwy 120.
|Wisconsin Emergency Response Plan|
In the course of developing the 2015 version of the Wisconsin Emergency Response Plan, Wisconsin Emergency Management planners conducted comprehensive consultations with all key governmental, non-governmental, and private stakeholders.
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|LT. Governor Kleefisch accepts 2015 WI Emergency Response Plan|
Lt. Governor Kleefisch today accepted the 2015 Wisconsin Emergency Response Plan (WERP) during a presentation at the 115th Fighter Wing at Truax Field in Madison. The plan provides direction to state agencies in response to disasters and emergencies including new annexes for cyber and catastrophic events.
“This plan brings the best of Wisconsin together while we prepare for the worst things that could happen,” said Lt. Governor Kleefisch. “Wisconsin’s first responders work every minute of the day to protect us. This plan gives them the guidance and training they need to prepare for what may come our way. Along with our other community partners, we can save lives and minimize the damage caused by a disaster and bring a coordinated approach to the recovery.”
The WERP was presented to Governor Walker in 2011. The new plan reflects changes and new threats facing the state and our nation. “We face many challenges barely dreamed about just a few years ago,” said Major General Donald Dunbar, Adjutant General and Wisconsin Homeland Security Advisor. “We have to make sure our plans are in place and responders are equipped and trained to meet these new threats.”
|Local, state agencies rehearse disaster response|
A major tornado outbreak might be a chance occurrence in Wisconsin, but one with very real repercussions.
The response to the potential damage and threat to life cannot be left to chance. That’s why local and state agencies teamed up July 15-16 for the Tri-County Exercise — a training scenario in which several tornadoes touched down within hours of each other, causing numerous fatalities and major damage to roads, bridges and buildings throughout southeast Wisconsin.
|ReadyWisconsin AmeriCorps Disaster Preparedness Program to Increase Community Resilience|
MADISON – Wisconsin Emergency Management (WEM) is seeking community-minded individuals to serve as part-time or full-time AmeriCorps members in emergency management offices throughout the state from September 1, 2015 through August 31, 2016. AmeriCorps, often referred to as a domestic Peace Corps, places individuals who make a commitment to serving their communities. Members receive a modest living allowance and earn an educational award granted upon the successful completion of their terms of service.
Now in its third year, the ReadyWisconsin AmeriCorps Disaster Preparedness Program aims to increase community emergency readiness by delivering preparedness training to organizations and businesses and by recruiting and training local volunteers who can help with response and recovery activities during disasters.
|LT. Governor Kleefisch accepts WI Homeland Security Strategy|
Lt. Governor Kleefisch today accepted the Wisconsin’s Homeland Security Strategy. The strategy developed by the Wisconsin Homeland Security Council is a road map for providing direction and prioritizing planning and response capabilities in Wisconsin to protect citizens.
“This strategy will ensure our first responders are trained and equipped, our critical infrastructure is secure, and we continue to plan and prepare for emergencies and disasters that may impact our state such as a cyber or agricultural event,” said Lt. Governor Kleefisch. “I’m thankful for the dedication and leadership of the Homeland Security Council and their efforts to continue to protect the citizens of Wisconsin.”
The new strategy replaces the document issued in 2012. It contains four priorities which include:
|4th of July Holiday: Play It Safe|
(MADISON) – The 4th of July and fireworks just go together. With the holiday approaching, this is a great time to remember the dangers of fireworks which can cause serious injuries and death if not properly used.
• In 2013 (latest available statistics), U.S. hospital emergency rooms treated an estimated 11,400 people for fireworks related injuries.
• 55% of emergency room fireworks-related injuries were to the extremities and 38% were to the head.
• The risk of fireworks injury was highest for children ages 0-4, followed by children 10-14.
• On Independence Day in a typical year, far more U.S. fires are reported than on any other day, and fireworks account for two out of five of those fires, more than any other cause of fires.
|Lt. Governor Kleefisch & WEM thank Green Bay Company for partnership to support Wisconsin firefighting|
Madison—Lt. Governor Rebecca Kleefisch today toured the Solberg Company in Green Bay and thanked employees and company officials for their dedication and support to public safety in Wisconsin following their cooperative agreement with Wisconsin Emergency Management to provide firefighting foam.
“The Solberg Company’s generosity to provide foam for local fire departments in the event of a crude oil fire shows their commitment to public safety in Wisconsin,:” said Lt. Governor Kleefisch. “We’re grateful for their support, but also for their example as a global innovator and industry leader based right here in Wisconsin.”
The Solberg Company recently provided 1590 gallons of firefighting foam concentrate that could be used during a crude oil fire. When mixed with water, it would produce more than 53,000 gallons of foam solution that could be used to help extinguish a crude oil fire. The concentrate is currently stored at Volk Field in Juneau County and would be transported to a location as needed.
|Damage reports from powerful thunderstorms|
(MADISON) – A line of powerful thunderstorms with strong winds and hail moved through Wisconsin this morning causing damage in the southern portion of the state. As of 2pm, approximately 32,000 residents were without power (22,000 in the Milwaukee area and 10,000 in southwest Wisconsin). There is a chance of more scattered showers and thunderstorms later this afternoon and evening with a slight possibility of isolated severe storms.
Northern Wisconsin: A woman was injured in Lac du Flambeau (Vilas County) when a tree branch reportedly struck the victim in the head. She was taken to a hospital for treatment.
Dane County: City of Stoughton reports multiple trees and power lines down.
|Updated damage reports from powerful thunderstorms|
(MADISON) – Clean-up continues today after a line of powerful thunderstorms with strong winds and hail moved through Wisconsin Monday morning. As of 10am there were 3,600 customers without power, down from 54,000 at the height of the storm. Crews from the National Weather Service office in Sullivan are surveying the damage in Green, Iowa and Lafayette counties today. The damage near Blanchardville and Hollandale was caused by straight line winds of 80 to 100 mph.
Southwest Wisconsin: Crawford County: One mobile home was destroyed in Wauzeka. Another home lost part of the roof and is not inhabitable at this time. Flood water damaged Bob & Lou’s Bar and Grill in Steuben.
Grant County: An estimated 20 homes along with 30 agricultural buildings were destroyed or severely damaged primarily around Cassville, Lancaster, Platteville, and Hazel Green. An additional 300 homes had moderate to minor damage. Emergency declarations have been issued for Cassville, Lancaster, Platteville and Grant County.
Green County: A woman was cut by glass in her home. Total damage in the county is estimated at $250,000 which includes damage to seven homes and many farm buildings and crops.
|Wisconsin Heat Awareness Day|
(MADISON) – Heat can kill. That’s why Wisconsin Emergency Management, the Wisconsin Department of Health Services and the National Weather Service are reminding people of the dangers associated with extreme heat and to promote community safety and health. Heat Awareness Day is Thursday, June 11th.
Summer heat waves have been the biggest weather-related killers in Wisconsin for the past 50 years, far exceeding tornadoes, severe storms and floods combined. Heat is also a major weather-related killer in the United States. People at higher risk of a heat-related illness include:
• Older adults
|FY 2015 Hazard Mitigation Assistance Funding Opportunity|
The Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) announced the opening of the FFY15 application period for the Pre-Disaster Mitigation (PDM) and Flood Mitigation Assistance (FMA) programs Friday, May 29, 2015. The Hazard Mitigation Assistance Guidance and the Hazard Mitigation Assistance Guidance Addendum dated February 27, 2015 applies to this year’s funding for the PDM and FMA programs. The programs are administered by Wisconsin Emergency Management (WEM). Both guidance documents are located at http://emergencymanagement.wi.gov/mitigation/programs.asp. Applications are due to Wisconsin Emergency Management via FEMA’s eGrants system no later than July 27, 2015.
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|Corps of Engineers slated to start work on flood-prone areas in Wisconsin|
ST. PAUL, Minn. – The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, St. Paul District, is working with the Wisconsin Emergency Management, Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources and county officials to collect information on flood-prone properties located in Columbia County.
Corps survey teams will visit flood-prone properties this spring in Columbia County. The surveyed areas include locations along the Wisconsin River in Portage, Wisconsin, and the Wisconsin towns of Caledonia, Dekorra and Lewiston.
The survey team will gather all necessary data from the road right-of-ways. They will not enter any property or structures. The team will collect information including structure locations, elevations, building use and types to evaluate the effectiveness of potential future flood risk reduction efforts.
|Testing Wisconsin’s Emergency Communications - “SIMCOM-Vital Connection 2015” in Winnebago County|
(Oshkosh) – Communications are critical during a disaster. Getting information and data to the right people at the right time can save lives. That’s why the Wisconsin National Guard along with Wisconsin Emergency Management, Winnebago County Emergency Management and Sheriff’s Office hosted a multi-agency communications exercise.
State Interoperable Mobile Communications Exercise or "SIMCOM-Vital Connection 2015" was held May 5-7 at the Sunnyview Expo Center in Oshkosh. The exercise tested Mobile Emergency Communications from more than 30 federal, state, tribal, local governments and volunteer agencies. The goal is to develop relationships and understand the capabilities of other agencies and their equipment before they are needed in a real emergency. Specific operations being tested this year include data sharing, radio frequency bridging and patching, and network failures.
“Testing communication interoperability capabilities with outside resources before an actual disaster event occurs is critical to ensure the highest level of response,” said Linda Kollmann, Winnebago County Emergency Management Director.
|NOAA Emergency Radios Save Lives - "Listen, Act and Live!"|
(MADISON) – The recent tornadoes in Illinois remind us that it is time to prepare for possible tornadoes here in Wisconsin.
May 6, 2015 is NOAA Weather Radio All Hazards Awareness Day. The campaign encourages Wisconsin residents to own a NOAA All Hazards Weather Radio, a 24-hour source of weather forecasts, watches, warnings, and non-weather emergency information provided by the National Weather Service and its parent agency, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA).
“NOAA All Hazards Weather Radios save lives”, says Brian Satula, Wisconsin Emergency Management Administrator. “The early warning of possible danger gives you and your family time to act and stay safe.” Satula adds this reminder, “Listen, Act and Live! Listen to the weather radio warnings and take action right away. You’ll have a much better chance of surviving disaster.”
|Testing Wisconsin’s Emergency Communications|
"SIMCOM-Vital Connection 2015" in Winnebago County
(MADISON) – Communications are critical during a disaster. Getting information and data to the right people at the right time can save lives. That’s why Wisconsin Emergency Management, Winnebago County Emergency Management and Sheriff’s Office, and the Wisconsin National Guard are hosting a multi-agency communications exercise.
State Interoperable Mobile Communications Exercise or "SIMCOM-Vital Connection 2015" will be held May 5-7 at the Sunnyview Expo Center in Oshkosh. The exercise is designed to display, educate and test Mobile Emergency Communications from more than 30 federal, state, tribal, local governments and volunteer agencies. The goal is to develop relationships and understand the capabilities of other agencies before they are needed in a real emergency. Specific operations being tested this year include data sharing, radio frequency bridging and patching, and network failures.
|Be Ready for Wisconsin Tornadoes|
Did you know that…
• Wisconsin averages 23 tornadoes annually.
• In 2014, 22 tornadoes were reported in Wisconsin by the National Weather Service. Eighteen of those tornadoes occurred in June. The strongest tornado in 2014 occurred on June 17 when an EF 3 tornado hit Verona in Dane County. At least 30 homes were damaged as well as the Country View Elementary School. The tornado traveled about a mile, had wind speeds of 136 to 165 mph and was on the ground for several minutes. An EF 2 touched down that same night in Platteville in Grant County. Several homes and businesses were damaged including the University of Wisconsin–Platteville.
• In 2013, 16 tornadoes touched down in Wisconsin including six tornadoes during the overnight hours of August 6-7. An EF 2 struck near New London in Waupaca and Outagamie counties injuring two people and caused millions of dollars in damage.
|Statewide Tornado Drill a "Go" for Thursday|
(Madison) – The National Weather Service says all Wisconsin offices are a “Go” for Thursday’s statewide tornado drill. At 1:00pm, the National Weather Service will issue a statewide test tornado watch and at 1:45pm a statewide test tornado warning. The drill ends at 2pm. There is no risk of severe weather in the state on Thursday with only a chance of scattered showers for southeastern Wisconsin.
Many Wisconsin radio and TV stations will participate in the drill. In addition, NOAA Weather Radio All Hazards (also known as emergency weather radios) will issue alert messaging. Many outdoor warning sirens across the state will also be activated. This is an ideal opportunity for schools, businesses and families to practice safety procedures for severe weather.
|Wisconsin Homeland Security Council reports reflect continued collaboration|
The Governor’s Homeland Security Council unveiled two preparedness reports today that discuss the accomplishments and ongoing collaborative efforts by state and local agencies in 2014 along with an assessment of risks facing Wisconsin. Despite continued improvement, the reports reflect that the state must remain vigilant and continue to improve efforts to protect lives and property. Read Full Story
| Wisconsin’s Tornado & Severe Weather Awareness Week April 13-17, 2015|
(MADISON) – Listen, Act and Live! Those words could protect you and your family during severe storm season. Listening to warnings and seeking shelter immediately will save lives. That’s why Wisconsin Emergency Management (WEM), ReadyWisconsin, the National Weather Service (NWS) and the Wisconsin Broadcasters Association (WBA) have teamed up for Wisconsin’s Tornado and Severe Weather Awareness Week from April 13-17, 2015.
Did you know that…
• Wisconsin averages 23 tornadoes annually.
|Be ReadyWisconsin when you Spring Forward Daylight Saving Time begins Sunday, March 8, 2015|
(MADISON) – Daylight Saving Time begins this Sunday as we “spring forward’ and set clocks ahead one hour. Daylight Saving Time is also a great time to check the things that keep us safe and ready for emergencies. ReadyWisconsin urges you to check these items:
• Smoke Detectors- Nearly 2,700 people die and more than 15,000 are injured each year because of fires that started in their homes. Now is the time to check and replace batteries if needed and make sure the devices around your house are working properly. The U.S. Consumer Products Safety Commission estimates that about 16 million homes in the country have smoke alarms that do not work. In most cases, the batteries are dead or missing. This is a great time to put fresh batteries in your smoke detector. You should also replace the entire smoke alarm unit every 8 to 10 years.
• Carbon Monoxide Detectors- Just last month, 30 people were checked and treated for carbon monoxide poisoning when the gas filled a Park Falls movie theater. In December, several people became ill in a Wisconsin Dells ice arena due to a malfunctioning ice resurface machine. According to the Centers for Disease Control, carbon monoxide is the leading cause of accidental poisoning deaths in the United States with more than 200 killed each year from overexposure to the gas. Never use gas or charcoal grills inside your home or an unventilated garage. Make sure you have CO Detectors and they are working. Now is also a good time to check and replace batteries in those units.
|Get Ready for Bitterly Cold Temperatures This Week|
(MADISON) – Dangerously cold temperatures and frigid wind chills are in the forecast for much of Wisconsin this week. ReadyWisconsin is reminding everyone about precautions you and your family should take to keep safe.
Forecast – The National Weather Service has issued a Wind Chill Advisory for much of Wisconsin tonight through Thursday morning. Highs will hover just above 0 degrees for much of the state with wind chills of -20 to -35 degrees.
Health Risks – With these bitter temperatures, beware of hypothermia and frostbite.
Stay indoors as much as possible and limit your exposure to the cold. Dress in layers and keep dry. Check on family, friends, and neighbors who are at risk and may need additional assistance.
Frostbite can occur on exposed skin in less than 10 minutes. Symptoms include a loss of feeling and a white or pale appearance in fingers, toes, ear tips and tip of the nose. Limit your time outside. If you see these signs, seek medical care immediately! Signs of hypothermia include shivering, exhaustion, confusion, fumbling hands, memory loss, slurred speech and drowsiness in adults and children. In infants, symptoms can include bright red or cold skin and very low energy. If you notice anyone exhibiting any of the symptoms of hypothermia, seek medical care immediately!
|Lt. General Honoré to Deliver Keynote at Gov. Conference on Emergency Management & Homeland Security|
(Madison) – Retired Lt. General Russel Honoré, who led recovery efforts following the destruction of Hurricane Katrina in 2005, will be the keynote speaker at the 48th Annual Governor’s Conference on Emergency Management and Homeland Security. As the nation approaches the 10th anniversary of Hurricane Katrina, Honoré will not only discuss lessons learned but why communities need to commit to preparedness before the next storm.
Honoré will be one of several speakers presenting at the conference that will be held March 11-12, 2015 at the Hilton Milwaukee City Center. More than 500 people from fire, law enforcement, emergency management, and other first responder agencies are expected to attend this year’s event.
|Wisconsin Warming Centers Open During Cold Weather|
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|Winter Weather Dangers - Important safety tips for the days ahead|
(MADISON) –The new year is bringing snow and arctic cold air that will impact Wisconsin the next few days. Here’s the latest information on weather conditions and tips to keep you and your family safe.
Bitter temperatures – Arctic air has moved in across the state creating dangerously cold wind chills. High temperatures will only be in the single digits, with low temperatures falling as low as -15. Bitterly cold overnight wind chill readings of -20 to -35 should be widespread across the state from Tuesday morning thru Thursday morning. The National Weather Service will likely issue wind chill advisories and/or warnings during this period. In addition, a Winter Weather Advisory has been issued for parts of southern Wisconsin that could receive 2 to 5 inches of snow overnight.
On the road - If you are traveling make sure you have a winter emergency kit in your vehicle. Items to include in the kit are candles and matches, a flashlight, pocket knife, snacks, a cell phone adapter, a blanket and extra clothing. For a complete list go to http://ReadyWisconsin.wi.gov