Open Community Forum, September 13th

RIOC Tackles Major Issue, Emergency Management Plan for Roosevelt Island

Updated 1 week ago David Stone
Yes, we are... all alone out there.
Yes, we are... all alone out there.
Creative Commons Attribution 2.0 Generic License

We live on an Island with few options when hazards large and small, expected and by surprise, arrive, making emergency management planning a critical, even life and death matter for us. RIOC's taking a lead on it, as it has in the past, with a fresh look.

A forum, set for September 13th at 6:00 p.m. at the Good Shepherd Community Center, plans "...to inform residents of the basic emergency plan that outlines responsibilities and procedures that will be implemented – to protect life and property - in the event of a natural or man-made disaster on Roosevelt Island."

That's a taller order than you might think. In October, 2012, when Super Storm Sandy blasted the City, water rose high above our seawalls, knocking power out at Coler Hospital. If you were here then, you won't have forgotten. I remember looking out my window in Manhattan Park as the East River claimed most of the area around our building for itself.

Because the complex wisely chose not to put critical infrastructure in basements, we got off easy, but the event sparked a lot of discussions.

RIOC Tackles Major Issue, Emergency Management Plan for Roosevelt Island
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A Sandy-like storm would put our Tram (high winds), subway (flooding) and ferry (dangerous tides) out of service, leaving the Roosevelt Island Bridge as the our only evacuation option. Imagine getting 12,000 people off Roosevelt Island, most without cars, and once you're done with that, where are we all going to go?

Now, what if, instead, the disaster came without warning, an earthquake for example or a terrorist attack. We have an active CERT team, but I doubt anyone's certain that all bases are covered. That's why RIOC's proactive approach is important.

The challenges for RIOC are immense. It'll be interesting to see what they come up with.

Be there, if you can. We will cover, if you can't.

Mark your calendars.

RIOC Tackles Major Issue, Emergency Management Plan for Roosevelt Island
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