06-19-2024  10:18 pm   •   PDX and SEA Weather
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NORTHWEST NEWS

Black Leaders Urge County to Continue Funding Multnomah Mothers Trust

The program has been entirely funded by American Rescue Plan grants, which run out after this year.

‘Feeling Our Age’: Oregon Artist Explores Aging Through Portraiture

64 women were painted and asked to reflect on lives well lived.

Off-Duty Guard Charged With Killing Seattle-Area Teen After Mistaking Toy for Gun, Authorities Say

Prosecutors charged 51-year-old Aaron Brown Myers on Monday in connection with the death of Hazrat Ali Rohani. Myers was also charged with assault after authorities say he held another teen at gunpoint. His attorney says Myers sincerely believed he was stopping a violent crime.

James Beard Finalists Include an East African Restaurant in Detroit and Seattle Pho Shops

The James Beards Awards are the culinary world's equivalent of the Oscars. For restaurants, even being named a finalist can bring wide recognition and boost business.

NEWS BRIEFS

University of Portland Honored with Carnegie Leadership for Public Purpose Classification

UP recognized as one of 25 institutions nationwide committed to advancing leadership in pursuit of justice, equity, diversity and...

The National Civil Rights Museum Announces 33rd Freedom Award Honorees

This is the museum's signature event, which pays tribute to individuals who have shown unwavering commitment to promoting equity and...

Word is Bond, Portland Art Museum, Portland Sneaker Week Announce Juneteenth Celebration Event, June 20

This Juneteenth program uses the shoe as a medium to amplify the creative voices and visions of Black men and their communities ...

Southeast Portland Natural Area Improvements Coming, Funded by Development Fees

Kelly Butte Natural Area trails, park amenities planned ...

Montavilla Pool to Reopen in July After Mandatory Maintenance

The pool will open later this summer due to an upgrade to the pool’s plumbing that required a more complex solution to achieve...

Nurses in Oregon take to the picket lines to demand better staffing, higher pay

More than 3,000 nurses at six Oregon hospitals spent a second day on the picket lines Wednesday carrying signs that say, “Patients over profits” and “We're out to ensure it's safe in there,” as they continued to demand fair wages and better staffing levels. Nurses are...

With pardons in Maryland, 2.5 million Americans will have marijuana convictions cleared or forgiven

Maryland this week became the latest state to announce mass pardons for people convicted of marijuana-related crimes as the nation wrestles with how to make amends for the lives disrupted in the decadeslong war on drugs. Under Gov. Wes Moore's plan, more than 175,000 convictions for...

A Missouri mayor says a fight over jobs is back on. Things to know about Kansas wooing the Chiefs

TOPEKA, Kan. (AP) — A plan in Kansas for luring the Kansas City's two major league sports franchises from Missouri has prompted their hometown's mayor to declare that the move ends a 5-year-old agreement by the states not to poach each other's jobs. The Kansas Legislature has...

Kansas lawmakers to debate whether wooing the Chiefs with new stadium is worth the cost

TOPEKA, Kan. (AP) — Kansas legislators trying to lure the Kansas City Chiefs to their state argue that helping the Super Bowl champions build a new stadium could bring Kansas millions of dollars in income taxes from players and coaches, which are currently going to Missouri. Some...

OPINION

Juneteenth is a Sacred American Holiday

Today, when our history is threatened by erasure, our communities are being dismantled by systemic disinvestment, Juneteenth can serve as a rallying cry for communal healing and collective action. ...

Supreme Court Says 'Yes” to Consumer Protection, "No" to Payday Lenders 7-2 Decision Upholds CFPB’s Funding

A recent 7-2 ruling by the U.S. Supreme Court gave consumers a long-sought victory that ended more than a decade of challenges over the constitutionality of the agency created to be the nation’s financial cop on the beat. ...

The Skanner News May 2024 Primary Endorsements

Read The Skanner News endorsements and vote today. Candidates for mayor and city council will appear on the November general election ballot. ...

AFRICAN AMERICANS IN THE NEWS

On Juneteenth, monument dedicated in Alabama to those who endured slavery

MONTGOMERY, Ala. (AP) — Thousands of surnames grace the towering monument, representing the more than 4 million enslaved people who were freed after the Civil War. The Equal Justice Initiative, a criminal justice reform nonprofit, invoked the Juneteenth holiday — the day that...

Pharrell at Louis Vuitton celebrates the diversity of human skin in Paris UNESCO show

PARIS (AP) — With just over a month before the Paris Olympics, Louis Vuitton celebrated the beauty of humans and their skin in a star-studded menswear showcase at the headquarters of U.N. cultural agency UNESCO in Paris. Models wearing garb in all the hues of human flesh paraded around a giant...

Rickwood Field, Willie Mays' first pro park and monument of opportunity and oppression, welcomes MLB

BIRMINGHAM, Ala. (AP) — Gerald Watkins watched Aaron Judge, Giancarlo Stanton and other New York Yankees wade through stalks of corn onto an Iowa field in 2021, near the filming site for the 1989 baseball movie “Field of Dreams.” Watkins thought about Rickwood Field, the...

ENTERTAINMENT

Book Review: 'Margo’s Got Money Troubles’ tells a tale of modern love and success

The cover art and title of “Margo’s Got Money Troubles” don’t quite convey the wild ride readers who crack open this new fiction from Rufi Thorpe will take. There’s a reason Apple TV optioned it as a series starring Nicole Kidman and Elle Fanning before it was even published. This is a...

Music Review: Paul McCartney and Wings' oft bootlegged 1974 'One Hand Clapping' deserves applause

The sound of Paul McCartney and Wings' “One Hand Clapping” used to only be heard on bootlegs, or in snippets available on archival releases over the years. But it's new (mostly) complete official release deserves two-handed applause. As aging rockers empty their...

Book Review: 'Swole' explores what masculinity could be in a hyperconnected, TikTok-imaged world

Author Michael Brodeur takes the gym too seriously, and not seriously at all at the same time, in his book “Swole: The Making of Men and the Meaning of Muscles” in an effort to show the readers that the overly online world of hypermasculinity is an illusion and what a man can be is what you...

U.S. & WORLD NEWS

Rifts seem to appear between Israel's political and military leadership over conduct of the Gaza war

JERUSALEM (AP) — The Israeli army’s chief spokesman on Wednesday appeared to question the stated goal of...

Putin in Vietnam, seeking to strengthen ties in Southeast Asia while Russia's isolation deepens

HANOI, Vietnam (AP) — Russian President Vladimir Putin is seeking to strengthen ties with longtime partner...

Can a marriage survive a gender transition? Yes, and even thrive. How these couples make it work

Marissa Lasoff-Santos and the person she would marry quickly fell head over heels in love. Lasoff-Santos was a gay...

Gang violence in Haiti has displaced nearly 580,000 people, a new UN report says

PORT-AU-PRINCE, Haiti (AP) — Surging violence in Haiti from clashes with armed gangs since March has displaced...

Hundreds died during this year's Hajj pilgrimage in Saudi Arabia amid intense heat, officials say

MECCA, Saudi Arabia (AP) — Hundreds of people died during this year's Hajj pilgrimage in Saudi Arabia as the...

2 French boys are accused of raping a 12-year-old Jewish girl in an act of antisemitism

PARIS (AP) — Two adolescent boys in a Paris suburb have been given preliminary charges of raping a 12-year-old...

Helen Silvis of The Skanner

Imagine the chaos if a tremendous earthquake suddenly struck the Northwest tonight. What if the quake and its aftershocks were  powerful enough to rip up streets, destroy bridges and buildings and knock out power and water supplies in Portland or Seattle?
It would be devastating for some. But because our local emergency services teams have spent years preparing for a disaster, they would have everything under control in a few hours. Right?
Wrong. The harsh truth is that you will have to take care of yourself and your family for at least three days following a disaster. This holds true for natural disasters such as earthquakes, winter storms or flu epidemics, and also for man-made disasters such as a radiation leak or terrorist attack.
"Before the National Guard or FEMA arrive it's going to take time — it's going to take days," says Linda Swift, emergency preparedness manager with the Oregon Trail Chapter of the Red Cross.  "We always say make a 72-hour kit, but if it was a week that would be better.
"You're going to have to survive for a minimum of three days and possibly more. You won't see the police department or the fire department. Our fire department might be destroyed. People need to realize those things will not be there for them."
Emergency staffers at the state, county and city levels all agree that every one of us needs to prepare for at least 72-hours without government assistance.

VIDEO

Are You Prepared?

"There is that expectation that government will take care of me in an emergency," said Bob Grist, a senior planner with Multnomah County Emergency and Disaster Management. "You can just walk down to the corner and get food and water. It doesn't get there by magic. It takes time to get that kind of assistance effort organized. In Portland supplies may have to come from Eugene, from Medford — from outside the area. You're talking about a logistical nightmare."
Emergency planners at state and local levels say government and first responders will be working hard to save lives, secure neighborhoods and restore services. But in any major disaster, emergency responders would quickly be maxed out dealing with the most immediate problems.
In fact, past research on disasters shows that 80 percent of rescues are performed by untrained private citizens, said Lawrence Behmer, who coordinates the City of Portland's Neighborhood Emergency Teams program, known as NET. Sometimes, however, because these ordinary heroes don't know the safest way to proceed, they risk their own lives unnecessarily. That's why Portland offers free NET training in how to save lives in a disaster.  The program, (known in Seattle as SDART, Seattle Disaster Aid and Response Teams, and nationally as the CERT, Community Emergency Response Team) seeks to boost emergency response capacity throughout the country by teaching volunteers basic search and rescue and first aid skills.
"The idea is that in a massive disaster citizens are the first responders," Behmer told The Skanner. "It can take a while for the fire department to get to you — they are going to be in the most dangerous areas.
"Net volunteers learn to work as a team to elevate debris and pull a victim to safety."

Unprepared and Out of Luck
Public awareness campaigns such as the Red Cross's "Together We Prepare," King County's  "Basic, Better, Best" or the national "Ready" campaign urge every household to make a disaster plan and put together a 72-hour emergency kit containing at minimum a gallon of water a day for each person, enough food for three days, a flashlight, a first aid kit and a radio. So far, however, the volume on that message has been low, so low that a majority of us have tuned it out.
Cynthia Thomas-Johnson, who runs a foster care agency, said she thought about making a disaster plan after the Katrina disaster.
"I thought about putting an emergency kit together, but I guess I'm one of those people who think it will never happen," she said. "I know what goes in it, but I just haven't got one in place."
Thomas-Johnson has plenty of company. A national survey by the American Public Health Association in 2007 found that almost half of us have no emergency plan or supplies.
Asked about how well they would cope with a public health crisis, 27 percent of those surveyed said they felt prepared. However further questions revealed that only about half of them — 14 percent — had put aside the recommended three-day supply of water, food, medicines and a first-aid kit. The reasons?  About 38 percent of us say we simply would rather not think about what would happen in a public health crisis. And 44 percent of Americans say they don't believe in worrying about things that may or may not happen in the future.

 
 

Before the National Guard or FEMA arrive it's going to take time — it's going to take days...We always say make a 72-hour kit, but if it was a week that would be better.

Linda Swift said that in reality emergencies happen all the time. The Red Cross responds to an emergency about once every 12 hours, where at least one family has suddenly become homeless. Most of these small disasters are fires.
But emergencies that affect whole communities are not rare either, Swift points out. Severe storms last January caused flooding and landslides all over the Northwest. In the worst affected areas, such as the Oregon coast, telephone communications were knocked out so the 911 system was useless.
In Vernonia, Ore., it took days for rescuers to reach many victims.
The floods showed how many people lack basic survival supplies. People with serious medical problems realized they had no back up generator to power their medical equipment, Swift said. Relatives from all over the country flooded the Red Cross with calls.
"We had to explain that no-one was getting in or out and we had no way of contacting their relatives," Swift said. "It was very hard."
Swift recognizes that putting out extra money for emergency supplies is a hardship for many low-income families.
"Water is going to be a critical issue," she said. "Perhaps you turn on the tap and nothing comes out or it is contaminated.
"What we try to do is encourage people to just one time a month start to put water aside. Wash your own containers, fill them and put them aside. Water bottles don't have to be new. We recommend a gallon a day per person."

For more information on preparedness click on our disaster button on our home page.

LINKED STORIES
Prepare, Survive a Disaster
When Disaster Strikes It's Up to You
72-hour Emergency Kits and Family Plans
Wanted: Heroes
What Do You Do When All the Lights Go Out
Disasters Are Not Rare, FEMA Count 69 a year
Multnomah County Info and Trainings

The Skanner Foundation's 38th Annual MLK Breakfast