"Getting Ready for Y2K"

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"Getting Ready for Y2K"


By Barry Serafin


B O U L D E R, Colo., March 2  Officials recently discovered Y2K problems that would have shut down a Boulder central dispatch center that serves police, fire, rescue and other agencies. The problems, which will cost $300,000 to fix, would have dramatically slowed response time.

Larry Stern, head of the Boulder County Office of Emergency Management, says other glitches could still crop up. If its a Y2K problem and we have a power outage, everybodys on their own, warns Stern.

Community Action

Concerns about possible disruptions of power, water, police, fire or medical services have prompted a community-wide campaign to avoid last-minute problems or panic.

Local Y2K organizer Kathy Garcia says there is no intent to create alarm. Actually, this is an opportunity. An opportunity for us to get to know our neighbors,

That happens regularly at meetings where neighbors share ideas.

At one such meeting, a man urged, Find out what the resources are in your neighbors. Who is a doctors assistant, who is a nurse, who has radio communications.

What is happening in the Boulder area is happening in an estimated 250 communities, large and small, across the country. There are still plenty of skeptics, but more and more people appear to be deciding that some prudent planning couldnt hurt.

Organizers here and elsewhere say there is no downside to planning for Y2K. They say it can only lead to closer-knit communities, better prepared for any kind of future emergencies.

American Red Cross Y2K Checklist

Check with the manufacturers of any essential computer-controlled equipment in your home to see if it may be vulnerable. Check fire and security alarm systems, programmable thermostats, appliances, consumer electronics, garage door openers, electronic locks, and any other electronics in which an embedded chip may control its operation.

Stock disaster supplies sufficient to sustain your and your family for several days up to a week. This includes having nonperishable foods, stored water, and an ample supply of prescription and nonprescription medications that you use regularly.

Have some extra cash on hand in case ATMs, credit cards, and the like cease to function properly. Plan to keep cash in a safe place and withdraw money from your bank in small amounts.

As you would in preparation for a winter storm, keep your automobile gas tank above half full.

In case the power fails, plan to use alternative cooking devices in accordance with manufacturers instructions. Dont use open flames or charcoal grills indoors.

Have extra blankets, coats, hats, and gloves to keep warm. Dont get heat from gas-fueled appliances (like an oven), or from wood-burning or liquid-fueled heating devices that arent designed to be used inside a residential structure. If you do purchase an alternative heating device, make sure its approved for use indoors and is listed with the Underwriters Laboratories (UL).

Have plenty of flashlights and extra batteries on hand. Dont use candles for emergency lighting.

Check your smoke detectors now. If they are hard-wired into your homes electrical system (most newer ones are), check to see if they have battery back-ups. Every fall, replace all batteries in all smoke alarms as a general fire-safety precaution.

Be prepared to relocate to a shelter for warmth and protection during a prolonged power outage or if for any other reason local officials request or require that you leave your home. Listen to a battery-operated radio or television for information about where shelters will be available.

If you plan to use a portable generator, connect what you want to power directly to the generator  do not connect the generator to your homes electrical system. Also, be sure to keep a generator in a well-ventilated area either outside or in a garage, keeping the door open. Dont put a generator in your basement or anywhere inside your home.

Check with the emergency services providers in your community to see if theres more information available about how your community is preparing for any potential problems. Be an advocate and support efforts by your local police, fire and emergency management officials to ensure that their systems will be able to operate at all times.

For more information, contact your local American Red Cross. ----------------------------------------------------------------------

-- Kevin (mixesmusic@worldnet.att.net), March 04, 1999


Nice find Kevin, as usual! <:)=

-- Sysman (y2kboard@yahoo.com), March 04, 1999.

Thanks Kevin.

Parallel worlds.


-- Diane J. Squire (sacredspaces@yahoo.com), March 04, 1999.

The video for the ABC story on community prep can be seen here...


-- Kevin (mixesmusic@worldnet.att.net), March 04, 1999.

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