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Local Agencies Team-Up for Emergency Response

Collaborative Elaborate Planning Exercise

Post Date:08/01/2012

Click here for a .pdf of Press Release

Media Contact: Wrenn Johns
Switchback PR + Marketing, Inc.
530.550.2252 ext. 101
brinn@switchbackpr.com

For Immediate Release

Local Electric Utilities and Agencies Team Up for Emergency Response
Elaborate Planning Exercise Involves Catastrophic Wildfire Scenario

TRUCKEE, Calif. (July 5, 2012) – Dozens of local utilities and emergency response agencies recently collaborated in a regional table-top exercise to improve emergency response. The working scenario involved multiple lighting caused fires from Plumas to Mono County creating a catastrophic wildfire scenario that would bring together utilities, county and state representatives, and fire agencies from the greater Lake Tahoe region.

Liberty Utilities & NV Energy hosted this exercise to help demonstrate the ability of electric utilities to work together during emergencies and improve communication and execution during catastrophic emergencies. The Truckee Donner PUD’s facilities were central to this exercise as the multiple fire scenario impacted both electric and communication facilities in the Truckee area.

“With the mild winter, low snow pack and early dry fire season, we wanted to work with all of the local agencies in the Sierra Front area to be prepared for any potential fire event that may occur” said Sam Rohn, Liberty Utilities representative. “We included the state agencies in the exercise to ensure we have proper support if the need for mutual assistance from outside our territory comes into play.”

The planning and coordination exercise was designed to improve the understanding of a response concept and identify opportunities or problems. The goals were improved communications, incident management, and inter-agency coordination.

This scenario planning exercise occurred, coincidently, just a few days before California Senator Ted Gaines hosted a local meeting reviewing the progress that has been made since Lake Tahoe’s Angora Fire. The program, titled ‘Angora Fire: Five Years Later’ took a critical look at the successes and failures of the emergency response to the Angora Fire and what the key players had accomplished in the last five years to address failures and opportunities.

“The TDPUD serves the greater Truckee community both electric and water and our response in a fire emergency will be critical.” said Michael Holley, TDPUD general manager. “We take being prepared very seriously and all of the participating agencies will need help from each other.”

For more information about the recent exercise or emergency response efforts, contact Liberty Utilities’ Sam Rohn at 530-546-1744 or sam.rohn@libertyutilities.com, NV Energy’s Jim Reagan at 775-834-7864 or jreagan@nvenergy.com or TDPUD’s Jim Wilson, 530-582-3925 or jimwilson@tdpud.org.

About Truckee Donner PUD:
The TDPUD is a non-profit, publicly owned utility agency created in 1927 and overseen by a locally elected board of directors. TDPUD provides the greater Truckee area with reliable and high quality water and power services while guiding the community to conserve resources. For more information about the TDPUD, call 530-587-3963 or visit www.TDPUD.org.
About Liberty Utilities:
Liberty Utilities Co., a subsidiary of Algonquin Power & Utilities Company's regulated distribution utility business provides regulated water and electric utility services to more than 120,000 customers with a portfolio of 22 water and electric utility systems. Pursuant to previously announced agreements, Liberty Utilities Co. is committed to acquiring Granite State Electric Company, a New Hampshire electric distribution company, EnergyNorth Natural Gas Inc., a regulated natural gas distribution utility and certain regulated natural gas distribution assets in Missouri, Illinois and Iowa, which together serve approximately 213,000 customers. 

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