Center of Excellence – Homeland Security Emergency Management

May 21, 2013

HSEM eNews Volcano Awareness Month

Filed under: General Interest,Washington State — coe at 5:50 pm

The Month of May is Volcano Awareness Month  and a good time to mark your calendars for the Great Washington ShakeOut!  Drop, Cover, and Hold On at 10:17 a.m. on October 17th*. 


Last year the Center and our over 75% (twenty-five) of our SBCTC colleges and members of our SSEM Council partnered with state Emergency Management Division (EMD) and Pierce College’s Homeland Security Emergency Management Degree Program (HSEM) to support the involvement of our community and technical colleges in The Great Washington Shakeout. This is the state’s largest earthquake preparedness drill and helps colleges meet state and federal requirements for preparedness drills and exercises. Forty four Washington colleges and universities reached more than 158,000 participants.


Again this year the HSEM Degree student interns from Pierce College are working with State EMD to support the ShakeOut event which will be held on October 17.    We look forward to having even more of our colleges participate in this year’s event.  The link to register is below along with additional information.




Register now for the largest drop, cover, and hold drill in history at

May 18, 1980 remains a vivid memory for millions of Washington’s residents as the day that Mount St. Helens propelled volcanic ash skyward to an altitude of 80,000 feet in just 15 minutes.   Volcanic ash clouds traveled across our state and around the world, as did the message that Cascade Range volcanoes can erupt. They can disrupt our lives, our state’s economy, and entire regions of our nation. Eruptions in the Cascades have occurred at an average rate of twice per century during the past 4,000 years, and future eruptions are certain.   Many of those eruptions, lasting weeks to years, would have caused considerable property damage and loss of life if they had occurred today. The USGS and the Pacific Northwest Seismic Network monitor the Washington Cascade volcanoes to detect subtle changes that may herald the next eruption and work closely with local, State and Federal emergency managers to prepare for the next volcanic eruption in Washington.


We invite you to learn more about volcanoes and volcanic hazards in Washington State by visiting the USGS website at!  Now, you can register to receive regular volcano activity updates and be notified of new activity via the Volcano Notification System (VNS), and keep informed about USGS-CVO current events at home page HOT STUFF. 



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