Welcome to 2017

2016 has come and gone. It was a busy year for hurricanes, wild fires, and tornados, many of which had the good sense to stay out of the county. Sadly, Mother Nature felt we needed more practice with snow preparations and decided that a couple of feet would be a good place to start. As we know it only takes a few inches to throw the region into a tizzy, and a couple of feet immobilized us for several days. Around the world, they not only had to deal with unusual weather, but man-made attacks as well.

2017 has arrived. We can hope that the winter of 2016 is not repeated. And we can hope that Mother Nature takes a break. But we must always be vigilant. As we enter 2017, we should take stock of our gear and review our plans. At the very least, take a look at your go-kit. Clothes tend to shrink when they are not worn regularly, and sunscreen does age out over time.

I have already updated the training plan for 2017. If you have not already got the big four under your belt (IS–700, IS–800, IS–100, IS–200), please take a moment to do so. If you have not already sent me your certification for passing, please do so as well so I have a record. I will be working through making additions and subtractions on the site as I get time. I have already added the new DHS widget that alerts us to updates and bulletins. I will also be trying to convert the quick reference guide into something you can put on your mobile device in ebook format, as well as something you can print out and carry in your go-kit.

We have several AEC positions open. If you would like to volunteer, please drop me a note. I am also looking for someone who can attend the monthly Emergency Manager’s meeting for me as I will not be able to attend as regularly as I have in the past.

Our friend, Pat Collins has retired from Emergency Management so there will likely be some small changes to the way Emergency Management is run in Prince William County. As I know more, I will let you know. At this point there is a search on for Pat’s replacement and I am sure they will find the best person for the job.

Our next meeting is Saturday, January 21, 2017 at 0900 at the EOC. As we normally do at the first meeting we will review the year past, look at the year to come, review the action plan, and update photos and contact information. We will also have a go-kit show and tell. There are a number of really good ideas out there and the cold winter months are a good opportunity to make modifications and ponder what others are doing.

If you would like to write an article for the Cadre, please let me know and I will be happy to give you a by-line. If you have pictures, please drop them my way so I can include them in the updates. And I will try to do better at posting in 2017 as well.

May you all have a wonderful 2017!