KING CITY — The City of King recently assembled its first full-scale emergency operations exercise in cooperation with multiple agencies to better prepare local leaders and first responders in the event of a major disaster.
The Oct. 10 drill, led by City Manager Steve Adams and Police Chief Robert Masterson, temporarily turned the King City Police Station into an Emergency Operations Center (EOC), which serves as the coordination hub for an incident response. An EOC allows local decision makers and response team personnel to gather critical information and coordinate response activities during an emergency.
“This is our first citywide full exercise,” Adams said. “We’ve been working on our disaster preparedness for a few years now … but what we’re doing today is involving everybody in the organization and outside agencies in an exercise, including field staff, which we’re pretty proud of and excited about because it’s really beyond what a lot of cities do by doing such a full-scale exercise.”
The King City exercise involved a scenario in which a massive earthquake struck the region and caused damages throughout the city.
“We chose the earthquake (incident) because it has the most widespread impact on all our operations, so for an exercise like this, we wanted everybody to have roles to play and things going on that they were going to have to deal with,” Adams said. “Earthquakes impact everybody, including schools, Cal Water, all our departments, so it works well for a full-scale exercise.”
City department staff, including officers, firefighters and Public Works personnel, worked together with outside agencies to respond to the mock incident. Other participants included the school districts, Mee Memorial Hospital, Cal Water, Monterey County Emergency Services, American Red Cross, SPCA for Monterey County and Salinas Valley Fairgrounds.