A Petaluma360 Blog

Our River Town

Bill Hammerman on Petaluma's past, present and future

When All Else Fails …

Although Thanksgiving has come and gone, and we all have expressed our “thanks” for various reasons: families, good health, friendly neighbors, and meaningful jobs; there is one community group of emergency preparedness volunteers that I’m thankful for – amateur radio operators who volunteer to establish an effective communications network when electric power is out and most normal means of communications are inoperable. Some readers might ask, “What’s the big deal? Learn to live with it.” If you review the news… Read More »

Lest We Forget “The Sages of Petaluma”

Ten “Lest We Forget” blogs were posted on this site (http://bill-hammerman.blogs.petalua360.com), between 6/12/14 and 6/13/15; Ed Mannion, Lyman Byce, Brainerd Jones, Samuel Cassidy, Helen Putnam, Rev. Lorenzo Waugh, John W. Cavanagh, Bill Kortum, Fred Wiseman, and Bill Soberanes. Only one of them, Lyman Byce, is portrayed by one of the current day “Petalumans of Yesteryear.” Their individual stories are posted on their current web site http://www.petalumansofyesteryear.org/ A new historic walk by the Petalumans is in the planning stages and will… Read More »

Great ShakeOut Drill – Oct. 15, 2015

How many Petalumans know that “Great ShakeOut Drills” have been held annually since 2008 in California? Participating is a great way for your family or organization to be prepared to survive and recover from quickly. Locally, the Petaluma CERT (Community Emergency Response Team) program that was initiated in Petaluma, in 2006, has supported this event by conducting local emergency radio team drills at the neighborhood level. When the CERT program was still supported by the City (2006-2011), the project graduated… Read More »

“A Sleepy River Town Grows Up”

How many reader read the special history section in the September 24th edition of the Argus-Courier, with the above title? Since then, several letters to the editor have commented on how well written the various articles in that special section were and how much more they learned about our River Town’s early history. Many topics were covered, including the history of the first newspapers that would later become the Argus Courier, the Petaluma’s Woman Club, the Petaluma and Haystack Railroad,… Read More »

How Does Sonoma County Communicate?

On September 1st., the beginning of National Emergency Preparedness Month, the Sonoma County Radio Amateurs sponsored a panel presentation and discussion devoted to how Sonoma County will be able to communicate when a major disaster (like an earthquake) occurs and most normal communication systems are inoperable. The following amateur radio groups in Sonoma County were represented on the panel and answered the questions (below), following the introduction of panel members. Auxiliary Communications Service – Sonoma County (Dan Ethan, WA6CRB). http://sonomacounty.ca.gov/FES/Emergency-Management-Communications-Service/… Read More »

Napa Earthquake – One Year Later

Last week, the news media ran stories related to the Napa Earthquake that struck at 3:20 a.m. on August 24, 2014. (I was downstairs reading a book when it happened.) It was a 6.0 magnitude quake that hit south Napa near the west Napa fault. Forty-one photographs of the damage have been posted on the Napa Valley Register.com site. Considerable structure damage was done to buildings and many residents were injured; one person died later. This earthquake was the largest… Read More »

Additional Emergency and Preparedness Resources Online

For those readers who have been following this latest series of Emergency & Disaster Readiness blogs and are interested in learning more about being “Prepared and Ready” for a major natural disaster; listed below are online links to organizations at the national, state, county, and municipal levels with pertinent information. American Red Cross http://www.redcross.org/prepare Citizen Corps http://www.ready.gov/citizen-corps Ready http://www.ready.gov/ Salvation Army http://www.salvationarmyquincy.org/disaster-relief/ Crisis Response Care http://www.crisisresponse.org/ Amateur Radio Emergency Service (ARES) https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Amateur_Radio_Emergency_Service Neighborhood HamWatch http://www.hamwatch.me/ Neighborhood Watch Radio http://neighborhoodwatchradio.org/

A Crummy Story – Getting Involved

Guest Blog by Jack Withington This week I was part of the change. In what is a Petaluma first, a group of concern citizens lobbied the Petaluma Board of Education to stop the use of a suspected toxic and possibly carcinogenic waste by-product, ground up recycled rubber tire particles called crumbs, from being used as an “infill” on Casa Grande High School’s sports field. “Infill” is one of several “toppings” used as a shock absorber placed on the top of… Read More »

Are You Ready and Prepared to Communicate?

Neighborhood HamWatch Net Control

Today’s blog is based upon several Emergency Preparedness blogs from 2110, 2011, and 2012. Almost ten years ago, on October 12, 2006, a “Special Report” video titled, Emergency Preparedness-Can Sonoma County Communicate? was produced by the Clearstream Media Group. Panel members included the Deputy Emergency Services Coordinator for Sonoma County, the South County Auxiliary Services Communications Team Leader (ACS), the Petaluma Fire Chief, and a concerned local citizen. Following Hurricane Katrina (August 29, 2005), a FEMA official was quoted as… Read More »

What To Do Before, During, and After an Earthquake

Today’s blog contains text copied from three earlier blogs (#97, 98, & 99) posted during National Preparedness Month, October 2012. Before An Earthquake * Know critical needs of yourself and your family. * Be aware of any unique hazards near your home such as power lines, trees, or hills. * Know the best escape route from each room, your home, and the neighborhood. Also have an alternate route from each. * Know where the gas, electric, and water shutoffs are… Read More »