Twitter Buttons

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Cal EMA News Blog

Cal EMA News Blog

Disaster Management Workshop and Emergency Vehicle Road Rally

Posted: 17 May 2011 10:58 AM PDT

Carnegie Mellon University's Silicon Valley Campus To Host
Disaster Management Workshop and Emergency Vehicle Road Rally  
Outstanding Research Supports New Technology To Improve Mobile Disaster Communication 

CALIFORNIA—Carnegie Mellon Silicon Valley in conjunction with the California Fire Chiefs Association, Communications Section and the California Emergency Management Agency will host the second annual disaster management workshop and vehicle road rally to showcase new technologies for improving mobile emergency communication May 22-23  in Mountain View, Calif.  The event is co-sponsored by the NASA Ames Research Center and will be held at the NASA Ames Research Park, where CMU's Silicon Valley campus is located.

"The workshop is designed to explore and unveil new technologies and processes for improving disaster communication worldwide,'' said Martin Griss, director of Carnegie Mellon Silicon Valley.  "Recent events, such as earthquakes, terrorist attacks, hurricanes and power outages have shown us that abrupt interruptions  to our businesses and daily lives are not far away.''

“The California Emergency Management Agency (CalEMA) is excited to sponsor and support this year’s combined CMU Disaster Management Initiative Workshop and California Mobile Command Center Rally.  CalEMA has always been at the forefront of disaster management and response, and our collaboration with Carnegie Mellon University truly integrates a full range of resources to serve the greater good," said CalEMA Acting Secretary Michael Dayton.

Steve Jordan, CEO of the National Disaster Resiliency Center, emphasizes communications as being the most critical component in disaster response and recovery efforts. States Jordan,"The NDRC looks forward to partnering with CMU SV and the DMI in developing solutions to this important issue."

More than one million people were displaced worldwide last year  as a result of natural disasters and ill-equipped disaster management plans, according to recent global disaster management reports.

Carnegie Mellon researchers will join a cache of firefighters, rescue workers, police, military experts and other emergency service operators to showcase and study the best practices for building resilient mobile disaster communication plans and systems. Because 85 percent of the world now communicates with cellphones or from other mobile devices and platforms, disaster managers are increasingly using social media to convey  important  emergency messages.

An array of sophisticated self-powered satellite systems will be on display to show the importance of communication capabilities in remote areas where traditional communication infrastructure is unavailable. Specially-designed rescue and emergency vehicles also will be on display during the two-day event.  Steve Ray, Distinguished Research Fellow at CMU, will be running a Plugfest designed to measure the degree of interoperability among the emergency communications vehicles and with emergency operations centers.  Results of the information exchange attempts will be recorded to provide a baseline set of measurements, answering the question of "What can be done right now and where do we go next?"

Jeannie Stamberger, associate director of the Disaster Management Initiative (DMI) at CMU's Silicon Valley campus, will discuss her work with various field agencies and first responders that spans several continents.

From data-mining to mapping and translation, Stamberger's team met the urgent needs of the Japan earthquake and tsunamis victims earlier this year.  The DMI team's work during the 9.0 Japan quake helped bridge the gap between unstructured social media and structured data.

"We're also going to explore the importance of amateur radio emergency communicators during our workshop,''said Griss, who directs both CMU's CyLab Mobility Research Center and the Disaster Management Initiative to study the business, organizational and technical issues related to mobility in managing systems found in cell phones, home appliances, building infrastructures and disaster scenarios.

Because handheld devices are so ubiquitous, the demand for the growth and adoption of new technologies to manage data and streamline disaster emergency communications will be an ongoing  goal of this 2011 workshop and rally, according to Griss.

For additional information about the DMI workshop and road rally, please see

Chriss Swaney
, 412-268-5776,
Sylvia Leong , 650-335-2808,

2011 Golden Guardian Statewide Exercise Media Events

Posted: 13 May 2011 10:00 AM PDT

TUESDAY, May 17, 2011

WHAT:  2011 Golden Guardian Kickoff Press Conference with the Capitol Region American Red Cross (ARC) and launch of Ready When the Time Comescorporate readiness campaign.


  • Cal EMA Acting Secretary, Mike Dayton
  • Congressman, Dan Lungren
  • American Red Cross, Capitol Region Chapter CEO, Dawn Lindblom
  • Ready When the Times Comes Corporate Sponsor
  • Grainger
  • PG&E

WHEN:       11:00 A.M., Tuesday, May  17, 2011

WHERE:      Cal EMA State Operations Center (SOC), front steps, 3650 Schriever Ave, Mather, CA  95655

WHY: On Tuesday May 17th, Cal EMA Acting Secretary Mike Dayton will participate in a press conference to kickoff the three day Golden Guardian Exercise, the largest statewide disaster drill. The theme of the 2011 exercise will be catastrophic flooding in the Inland Region of California.  Joining him with the overall message of disaster preparedness will be Congressman Dan Lungren and ARC Capital Region CEO Dawn Lindblom, who will be launching the corporate readiness campaign, Ready When the Time Comes.

WEDNESDAY, May 18, 2011

Media Event (Twitchell Island, Isleton, CA)

WHAT:  2011 Golden Guardian Media & Executive Briefing at Twitchell Island


  • Cal EMA Acting Secretary, Mike Dayton
  • Department of Water Resources (DWR), Michael Miller
  • DWR Incident Command Teams

WHEN:  11:30 A.M., Wednesday, May 18, 2011

WHERE:  DWR Flood Fight Warehouse at Twitchell Island, Isleton, CA

Please Note:  The site does not have a physical address.  However, the Owl Harbor Marina is next to the briefing site.  The address for the Owl Harbor Marina is:  1550 Twitchell Island Road, Isleton, CA 95641

On Wednesday, May 18th, Cal EMA Acting Secretary will participate in an executive/media briefing with Department of Water Resources staff.  Flood fighting resources and activities will be discussed.  In addition, media will be able to observe DWR Incident Command teams as they simulate flood activity and response at Twitchell Island.

Twitter links

****REMINDER**** Every fire has the ability to be catastrophic. The wildland fire management environment has profoundly changed. Growing numbers of communities, across the nation, are experiencing longer fire seasons; more frequent, bigger, and more severe, fires are a real threat. Be careful with all campfires and equipment.
View blog top tags