The devastating results look remarkably similar, but what’s heading our way would be worse than both. The Washington coast could see a tsunami 100 feet high in places powered by a magnitude nine earthquake.
In 2016, emergency management agencies from around Washington, the National Guard, and the Federal Emergency Management Agency conducted a week-long drill to assess the state’s readiness at the scale of the disaster they’re expecting.
The old guidance for people to prepare to be on their own for three days after an emergency went out the window. Instead, it was replaced by guidance that most people need to be ready for two weeks, and for at least twice that long in coastal communities.
The exercise was named Cascadia Rising and involved more than 22,000 military personnel, emergency responders, and others.
The exercise concluded that we could see 8,440 people killed as a direct result of the quake and tsunami, more than 12,000 injured, more than 500,000 buildings destroyed or damaged, and 1.25 million people would need food and water.
KING 5 Special | Disaster: Are you prepared?
Which begs the question, what do you have? Are you prepared?
It would be bad enough if that were the state’s only risk, but we also have the Seattle fault, the South Whidbey Island Fault, and others.
We experience near hurricane force windstorms like the Columbus Day storm of the early 1960s. In December of 2006, a severe windstorm left swaths of Seattle’s east side suburbs without power for two weeks.
Again, are you prepared to be on your own when a disaster strikes?