AMU Emergency Management Original Public Safety

EDM Wednesday Briefing: CalFire Camp for Future Female Firefighters

Emergency and disaster management briefing for January 12, 2022: A turbine collapse prompts TransAlta to replace 50 foundations in New Brunswick, Canada; the Navy is working to comply with state officials regarding the Red Hill Shaft well in Oahu; lithium harvesting may provide a boost to the Salton Sea region in California; a strong magnitude 6.8 earthquake struck in the Northern Pacific just off the coast of Alaska; the NWS rated the early Sunday morning tornado in Alabama as an EF-2; a passenger caused extensive damage to cockpit flight controls on an American Airlines plane; officials say there is extensive infrastructure damage in Fiji after Tropical Cyclone Cody; and applications are being accepted for CalFire’s Camp Cinder, a free camp for future female firefighters.

1. Design flaws were allegedly the cause of a wind turbine collapse in October in Canada. TransAlta Renewables, Inc., is now set to replace the foundations at the two sites in Kent Hills, New Brunswick. The company said the replacement for the 50 foundations will cost an estimated $59 to $79 million with a loss of about $2.7 million a month in revenue while the turbines are shut down.

2. A fuel leak that contaminated water supplies to about 93,000 residents on Oahu in Hawaii is under investigation by the Navy. The Navy halted operations at its Red Hill Bulk Fuel Storage facility and will provide alternative drinking water to those residents potentially affected by the contaminated water. The Navy is working to install a drinking water treatment system for the Red Hill Shaft well, develop a system for monitoring it and defuel the nearby underground fuel storage tanks.

3. Once a beautiful area dominated by the Salton Sea, Imperial County is now allegedly one of the poorest communities in the U.S. The 300-square-mile Salton Sea was created when the Colorado River overflowed, but without any continual water resource to replenish the sea, it has been drying up for years. Potential plans for a lithium hydroxide extraction site and geothermal plant may revitalize the area. According to reports, the area has the largest lithium reserve in North America, which may produce up to 20,000 tons of lithium per year by 2024. Lithium is essential for renewable energy production, including the batteries used in electric vehicles.

4. A magnitude 6.8 earthquake struck the Fox Islands in Alaska on Tuesday, followed by another 6.6 quake that likely was an aftershock. The U.S. Geological Survey noted that the 6.8 earthquake struck at a depth of about 13.8 miles approximately 40 miles southeast of Nikolski. Several more aftershocks, many of them 4.0 or higher, were also recorded in the area. Little or no damage has been reported in the sparsely populated region.

5. An early morning tornado that swept through Sabine Parish, Louisiana, on January 9 was rated an EF-2 by the National Weather Service (NWS). The tornado cut a half-mile-wide swath of damage over a 3.56 mile-long track. A total of six injuries were recorded from the tornado, which hit at about 4:53 a.m. ET with winds of about 125 mph.

6. An American Airlines aircraft suffered significant damage after a passenger ran down the jet bridge and into the open cockpit. According to reports, pilots tried to stop the individual as he damaged flight controls and before he attempted to jump out a cockpit window. Flight 488 was to depart for Miami, Florida, from San Pedro Sula in Honduras when the incident occurred. Another aircraft had to be brought online to complete the flight.

7. Fiji has extensive infrastructure damage after Tropical Cyclone Cody devastated the island earlier this week with heavy rainfall and flooding. The Category 1 storm left one person dead and forced the evacuations of at least 2,000 people as floodwaters continued to rise. The winds, heavy rainfall, and flooding downed power lines and trees and inundated towns with mud and debris. Officials are cautioning residents that falling rocks and landslides are still possible, and that they should avoid walking, driving, or swimming in the floodwaters due to the various dangers.

8. CalFire is offering a free camp this summer for future female firefighters. Camp Cinder is designed to introduce young women to firefighting in a safe, dynamic, and yet challenging environment. Two different dates and locations are available for interested individuals, including one from June 20-24 at Shasta College in Redding and one from June 22-26 at CalPoly in San Luis Obispo. Applications are being accepted until April 24, 2022 and can be found online on CalFire’s website.

Kimberly Arsenault serves as an intern at the Cleveland/Bradley County Emergency Management Agency where she works on plan revisions and special projects. Previously, Kimberly spent 15 years in commercial and business aviation. Her positions included station manager at the former Midwest Express Airlines, as well as corporate flight attendant, inflight manager, and charter flight coordinator. Kimberly currently holds a master's degree in emergency and disaster management from American Public University.

Comments are closed.