Meeting tomorrow with city/water/power officials : LUSENET : TimeBomb 2000 (Y2000) : One Thread

In my hometown, a suburb of Detroit, there will be a panel discussion on community preparedness and what certain companies are doing to combat the bug. What kind of questions would put these folks on the spot? The first speaker is a representative of Comerica bank, she will talk about what the banking industry is doing. Next there will be a lady from the local hospital (large, Detroit area hospital). The next person is our local water plant operator. He claims that our water plant was built so long ago that it still runs on manual (they never switched over to computers) I would like to ask some probing questions addressed at the first two speakers. I want something that will show the audience members that there is something to worry about. I would appreciate your input on some relevant questions... Thanx Tree

-- Tree God (, May 17, 1999


I try to ask 3 questions: 1. are you doing end-to-end testing? 2. how do you define "system" (example - a system is a pc on a desk or a system is the whole metropolitan subway) 3. what are you doing personally to prepare for Y2K (sometimes speakers who have direct orders about what to say take a risk and give some *really* informative answers to this question)

-- Sally Strackbein (, May 17, 1999.

I got a look at the wastewater treatment plant here about a month ago. About 8 MILLION gallons a day (for a mid sized town of 80,000) of sewage. The backup generator (which can only handle about 90% of their needs, they're ordering a bigger one)_ is of 800kW size and I suspect sucks about 15 to 10 gallons of diesel an hour (well that's just a guess)

There is no backup resevoir, the poop-pumps MUST run all the time (or poop gets all over the place), there are multiple pumps of course. Sewage is continually processed.

They're still tinkering with their SCADA system. It's fairly new, so the manual controls are still in place but the current version allows the system to run unattended at night.

The bleach being used is only about 3 times as concentrated as the stuff you get at k-mart. They have about 6 weeks worth at maximum. Ditto polymer, etc. Treated Sludge is trucked every week or so. (60 tons or was it 600?)

In short, totally dependent on power. Ask your guys if they have a SECOND backup generator in case they ever need to service the main backup...

-- scatman (, May 17, 1999.

Uh. . .I assume you are talking about the following?

Justice Pro-Se Of Michigan

* * Y2K UPDATE * * Franklin Frith, Moderator

Invited Panelists:

U.S. Coast Guard Y2K Manager for the City of Dearborn Y2K Manager for the City of Dearborn Heights Detroit Water Board McKesson Pharmacy Systems City of Detroit Fire Department Office of Emergency Management Michigan Consolidated Gas Co. Social Security Detroit Edison

7:00 To 10:00 PM EDT Tuesday May 18th, 1999 Henry Ford Centennial Library Auditorium 16301 Michigan Ave., Dearborn, Michigan

Apologies if this is not the event to which you refer.

If it is, however, the question you may want to direct to each panelist is this: (And take notes on who answers and who does not.)

What are they advising the public to do to prepare for UNEXPECTED disruptions if all does not go as planned?

Detroit Edison has gone on record as saying the public should prepare for Y2k as it would for a severe storm.


-- FM (, May 17, 1999.

For the water and sewer authority and the hospital: "In the event of a long-duration public power shortage, how are they prepared to continue operations and what kind of contingency plans do they have if the power outage outlasts their back-up generator fuel supplies?"

Background: during the Quebec Ice Storm, several municipalities did run out of fuel for their emergency generators, as did some hospitals. Things actually got to the point that the city of Montreal was less than six hours from running out of fuel for its water system emergency generator.

Several cases exist where work-arounds were performed. In two instances, railroad locomotives were pulled off tracks and run down city streets to reach a hospital and a municipal shelter. Once on- site the locomotive generators were hooked to the power input for these facilities and the locomotives served as large generators to keep these critical facilities operating.

Try and get your local officials to be open-minded to brainstorming solutions such as the locomotives.


-- Wildweasel (, May 18, 1999.

Hit the pocket book:

Is the sity, county, hospital district, school district finished remediating their finacial and payroll systems, their retirement and accounts systems, the courthouse records and tax records? Welfare distribution, emissions and environmetal controls? Emergency food, clothing, shelter, heat, power, toillets, food prep and cleaning at the "proposed shelters" if needed fo rmore than 3 days? Where emergancy heat and power coming from at shelters for homeless and those unable to take care of themselves or their families?

What is the status of their contingency plans? Emergency plans? What is leave policy for workers? National Guard contingencies? traffic and traffic control?

What city and county systems are NOT yet tested? When will these tests complete?

-- Robert A. Cook, PE (Kennesaw, GA) (, May 18, 1999.

Two questions are all you need to ask the PR people because they will say that everything is "on schedule" (for disaster).

Are your currently using the systems that you'll be using in 2000?

If NO then When will you be?

I've been coming to this forum for many moons and I've never seen this in any posts. Ed Meagher of Y2K Today Radio came up with this simple verification. This should put some concreteness to counteract the lying and happy talk rhetoric that you hear at these PR events.

-- PJC (, May 18, 1999.

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