Earthquake workshop demand at an all-time high

Saanich Emergency Program workers are making a presentation every day throughout the community on earthquake preparedness as interest escalated following two recent disasters abroad.

“People, I believe, are beginning to get an understanding of the seismic risk we have here. And more realistically, they’re understanding and recognizing the steps to get prepared with respect to what they need to do to get through something like that,” said Brock Henson, emergency program officer for Saanich.

Free preparedness courses, hosted weekly, are booked full through next month, and demand has forced the program to open up new dates.

For info on the April 12 (7 p.m., Commonwealth Place) or the May 16 (7 p.m., Pearkes) workshops, visit sep.saanich.ca.

Program volunteers also host community workshops for groups of 20 or more, but those are booked solid through to June.

“The interest in earthquake preparedness is up dramatically, and I think it’s largely due to the earthquakes that appeared in Japan and Christchurch (New Zealand) in recent months,” Henson said. “This is definitely a spike in demand that we have not experienced previously – even after the earthquakes in Haiti or Chile (in early 2010).”

To book a community workshop, or to volunteer for SEP, call 250-475-7140.

kslavin@saanichnews.com