Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Beakerkin in a small earthquake

I was routine business when a small tremor struck. I honestly thought it was yesterdays chicken parm gone wrong. While my peers were confused I called the command center and gave the word to stay put. Five minutes later we got the order to evacuate and I performed my duties and was the last person off the floor.

In such contingencies Federal Workers are to go to a predetermined spot. I wanted to grab a Knish at the cart along the way but got an earful from a peer. I performed my duties as per the training and a supervisor made sure the floor was clear. In the event of an injury I would have to stand by until rescue personnel arrived.

It is amazing how despite many drills we always seem to fail when the real thing happens. The top boss asked for the number to the command center and we went back to work. Funny but I had the foresight to make contingency plans for my interviewees.

I guess being blown up at the WTC twice, assorted Ferry mishaps, blackouts and industrial accidents have given me a cool response. We knew the quake was felt in Washington because people were on the phone with our counterparts when the quake struck.


Ducky's here said...

Mall earthquake? You were goofing off at the mall?

Jacqueline said...

Sorry about the knish. Glad your ok. Some excitement is good for you once in awhile. LOL.

beakerkin said...


That was a minor typo. I was at my duty station and directed a few hundred people to safety.


What I find amazing is that despite repeated drills almost no wardens responded. The event was identified as an earthquake and training dictates go to the stairwell.

The command post is a valuable resource. If a security or health
emergency exists they are invaluable. A real crisis was averted when a visitor had a stroke. The command center got a nurse in under two minutes. When a serious public safety concern is identified they are quick and do not waste time. A potentially dangerous criminal is identified and they dispatch armed guards until the person is escorted to a secure location. That scenario did
happen and some people thought it was overkill. However, when dealing with someone who is wanted
for a violent crime no chances are taken. In fact the US attorney also
responds quickly to direct the efforts.

Having completed my task I wanted to relax with a knish and a Mountain Dew at the assembly point.
Then again as I was the last person
out the delay at the assembly point would have noticed. Management does not see the value of a knish and a dew after the mission has been accomplished.

Always On Watch said...

The quake was stronger here, and I was a bit unnerved for a few minutes. When the quake struck, I was in an office building. Mr. AOW was home along and incommunicado as his cell phone wasn't working; he can't get to the landline phone easily.

Even the eggplant-shaped feline was alarmed. It takes a lot to alarm Cameo!

A small aftershock here last night.