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What natural disaster do you fear? Thurston County emergency planners want to know

Thurston County officials are looking for feedback to help update the county's Hazard Mitigation Plan.

THURSTON COUNTY, Wash. — Along with thrill rides and fried food, visitors to the Thurston County Fair can get a dose of emergency preparedness.

The Thurston County Regional Planning Council is reworking the region’s Hazard Mitigation Plan and bought a table at the fair to get public feedback.

“Are you concerned about wildfires? What if there’s a major earthquake?” said Thurston County Hazard Mitigation and Recovery Coordinator, Emily Schoendorf.

Schoendorf said the county is working with local agencies to come up with ways to combat wildfire risks, rising sea levels, and extreme weather events.

"We don't necessarily want to have a doomsday conversation with everyone who walks by," Schoendorf said. "But we want people to know that we're here, we're planning and there are these resources that exist."

She said by updating its plan, Thurston County will qualify for federal grants to help pay for mitigation measures.

The council is encouraging Thurston County residents to complete the process by participating in an online open house and survey.

Schoendorf said she hopes after taking part the public will also take steps to prepare for disasters, like having two weeks' worth of food and water handy.

”The more prepared an individual is, the better we are prepared to help you, and the faster we’ll be able to respond and recover from a disaster when one happens,” said Schoendorf.

Being knowledgeable and prepared for natural disasters can prevent loss of life, loss of property and loss of money.

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