Thursday, April 9, 2009

NBC/Universal Earthquake Preparedness Fair 2009

Firefighter/Paramedic Jayson A. Johnson with Human Resource Manager Allison Dombrow of NBC/Universal. A special thank you to Mike Ripley for inviting the Los Angeles Fire Department-DAC (Disaster Awareness Course) to participate in this outstanding event. We'll see you again next year!

This is the second year that I have personally been involved in the NBC/Universal Earthquake Fair. It is an inspiring to see the pockets of preparedness. Like seeds thrown across a concrete/urban field, often the people I speak to do not allow the roots of preparedness to truly take hold, but that is to be expected. The true reward comes when a few of those thrown seeds find the cracks in the concrete and the roots of knowledge grow deep. As the roots take a hold, the outward growth is nurtured and obvious. It is an honor to see the fruits of preparedness/labor blossom.
Just today, a young lady who reminded me of meeting at last years event, shared that she is currently going through a CERT class. That young lady is a wife, mother, sister and a daughter. Her knowledge touches at least six others directly. That my friends is how Los Angeles will handle the great dilemma. "How does thirty two hundred divide into four million"? (There are about thirty two hundred paid firefighters in the city of Los Angeles and over four million the math.) We must all share in the responsibility of getting the word out, the responsibility of getting the training and the responsibility of maintaining of skills. I can not tell you how many times someone has said to me...."Oh, I'm a CERT member, but I did it about ten years ago." Do you honestly feel comfortable with trying to remember training from ten years ago? Just think about how much our world has changed in the last ten years, the events that we have learned from in the last ten years. Y2k, 9/11, Katrina, Chatsworth Train accident to name a few. Los Angeles has some of the most experienced, knowledgeable and approachable firefighters in the world. Our training is done by sworn firefighters who have lived, worked and saved lives in all areas of this city. The training is free. What is stopping you and your family, friends and community from being prepared?

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