Great Utah ShakeOut: How Salt Lake County Preps For The Big One

Apr 18, 2019, 12:55 PM | Updated: 12:55 pm

SALT LAKE CITY, Utah – Drills took place across the state Thursday as residents took part in the Great Utah ShakeOut.

The drills helped educate Utahns on what to do in the event of a large, destructive earthquake.

Salt Lake County teamed up with various agencies to practice disaster scenarios set up at the Welby Pit in South Jordan, which included downed power lines, piles of debris on top of cars and homes, and looking for victims.

“Our objectives today, ladies and gentleman, are to safely gather, deploy, stage, operate in field conditions, and demobilize transportation and public works technicians,” Joaquin Mixco, chief emergency manager with the Utah Department of Transportation, told crews gathered at the earthquake drill.

During each exercise, crews discovered where the flaws were and how to be safe while responding. Workers from Salt Lake County Public Works, UDOT, Salt Lake County Emergency Services and others received hands-on experience on what to look for if they come across downed power lines, landslides and more.

“We’re trying to make sure we are good stewards of the public safety, and to do that it’s important for us to consider ourselves teams,” Mixco said. “Although we don’t see ourselves regularly from counties to cities to the state, this is our chance to do that.”

Salt Lake County Mayor Jenny Wilson was also at the training. She said history has shown that large earthquakes can hit Utah, and people need to be prepared.

“We’re ready at a moment’s notice, but we’re only so good as each household preparing themselves,” Wilson said. “To know where you’re going to meet your kids if you’re separated is important.”

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Great Utah ShakeOut: How Salt Lake County Preps For The Big One