Safe keeping: Preparedness, among families or agencies, is a year-round thing

Spring in to safety.

The start of the new season underscores a variety of points about public as well as private safety.

With the (promise of) warmer weather in the coming week, and no school in session for spring break, young people will be out and about in greater numbers throughout the day.

We hope, for the sake of their overall wellness, that the kids get some active outside time. But with that comes greater exposure to things such vehicle traffic.

Combined with the reality of frigid temperatures persisting at times and places in the valley, it’s good to stay vigilant for young pedestrians, bicyclists and skateboarders as they get out and about during their week’s vacation.

This leads to the matter of the annual children’s safety fair, March 30 from 10 a.m. to noon at Jackson Park. (See KidSpace, page A10, for details.)

The event, dovetailing with the community Easter Egg Hunt, is a great opportunity for families to have fun and learn safety tips at the same time.

There will be swag — stickers, pencils and even bicycle helmets — and the chance to meet some of the firefighters and other people who work hard to keep the community safe.


On that note, kudos to the volunteer and paid individuals who collaborated in Thursday’s emergency services drill. Nurses and paramedics, law enforcement, public works crews, American Radio Emergency Services operators and many others, including “victim” volunteers, were involved.

The event was a broad-based test of the ability of agencies to work together and maximize resources in times of large-scale trauma and emergency. It’s part of an ongoing process of preparation that local agencies seem to be taking seriously.

The next steps will be to take the feedback from the evaluators and continue to review procedures in order to make emergency management run as smooth as possible. But under guidance of county officials, including Emergency Services Manager Karl Tesch, the spirit of cooperation is alive and well.

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Latest video:

Lawnmower torches Arbor Vitae on Portland Drive

The riding lawn mower driven by Norma Cannon overheated and made contact with dry arbor vitae owned by Lee and Norma Curtis, sending more than a dozen of the tightly-packed trees up in flames. The mower, visible at far right, was totaled. No one was injured; neighbors first kept the fire at bay with garden hoses and Westside and Hood River Fire Departments responded and doused the fire before it reached any structures. Westside Fire chief Jim Trammell, in blue shirt, directs firefighters. The video was taken by Capt. Dave Smith of Hood River Fire Department. Enlarge

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