Threats & Hazards

Emergency Preparedness & Response Program

Public health threats and hazards can consist of disease outbreaks, terrorist attacks, extreme weather, poor air quality, shortages of safe water and food, and an interruption of electricity, gas, telephone, and other services.

Overview

Some of the most common threats and hazards in our area to be aware of are wildfires, power outages, winter storms, and floods. The more you know about the threats in the area, the better prepared you can be.

  • Droughts and dry conditions throughout various times of the year increase the risk for wildfires. Careless use of fire in highly wooded areas can also dramatically increase the chance of a wildfire, which can then quickly spread across trees and dry brush and threaten homes and businesses that are in the vicinity.
  • Power outages may be the result of naturally occurring weather conditions such as high winds or winter storms, or other factors. 
  • Winter storms can range from moderate snow over a few hours to blizzard conditions with blinding, wind-driven snow or freezing rain that lasts several days. The time to prepare is before the snow falls or ice forms.
  • Floods cause loss of life and damage to structures, crops, land, flood control structures, roads, and utilities. Floods may also lead to erosion, landslides, and can potentially transport debris and toxic products that result in secondary damage.
  • Disease outbreaks can be a threat to our daily lives and result in a negative impact on the economy. Our preparedness and response team has responded to recent outbreaks of measles, mumps, norovirus and influenza in the community.

Public Health Emergency Preparedness and Response in Action

On April 10 and 11, SRHD and local preparedness and response partners participated in a national exercise called Tranquil Terminus. The exercise was designed to test federal and local response plans and capabilities around coordination, communication, treatment, and movement of multiple patients with Ebola Virus Disease. In the months leading up to the exercise many partner meetings were held. The planning group reviewed response plans and designed the exercise to ensure participants had the best learning opportunities possible, and that plans were tested adequately.

Spokane Regional Clean Air Agency

Monitor local air quality with Spokane Regional Clean Air Agency.

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