Golden West College participated in the Great California Shake Out on October 17 by conducting an evening evacuation drill. “This is the first drill we have had during evening classes, ever!” said Valerie Venegas, GWC’s Director of Emergency Preparedness. The campus has been actively participating in disaster preparedness during the day, but concerns by faculty and staff for the lack of drills and training exercises after 5 p.m., prompted the college to participate in the Shake Out at 7:30 p.m.
The drill started with an alert to everyone registered in the GWC Alert system (all students are automatically registered at the time of enrollment). The alert was delivered by cell phone, text, email, and Twitter with instructions to DROP, COVER, & HOLD ON for one minute and then evacuate to their designated assembly area. Runners from each of the four areas delivered all clear notifications to the Command Center once the buildings had been evacuated.
John Tornow, Evening Information Coordinator, was the EOC Commander, and the night-shift custodial staff were brought in early for the opportunity to participate in the training. Several “day-time” managers were also present as observers.
Linda Morin, CCCD’s Environmental Health and Safety Coordinator, observed the drill and offered just two suggestions for improvement, then added, “For a first-time evening drill, I am very impressed. Golden West College did a great job.”