Organizers hope expo will shed light on overcoming power problems in an emergency.
By Charly SHELTON
here are always problems during a blackout. Lack of resources, lack of heat and lack of Instagram to name a few. During a blackout due to a natural disaster or catastrophe, information is key, but without power the options of receiving information are limited. And it is dire for those who have battery-operated medical devices when needing a charge – but not getting it – could result in a hospital visit.
These reasons are why CV Ready will be hosting an event this weekend to educate the public on various portable electronic devices and ways of charging medical devices during a blackout.
“We believe that information is power whenever there is some kind of an outage. Power outages occur with some frequency,” said Don Ross, president of CV Ready. “It’s absolutely critical that people know there are different ways of getting their devices recharged and that they don’t have to spend the big money on a generator. It’s not a generator or nothing; there are lots of alternatives in between.”
The event will be held this Saturday from 1 p.m. to 3:30 p.m. at St. Luke’s of the Mountains Church, 2563 Foothill Blvd. in La Crescenta, and the public is invited to come and get information. There will be a 45-minute lecture beginning around 1 p.m. to explain some of the basics and the terminology before breaking out into the expo to get some hands-on experience with the various equipment.
If there are any community members in attendance at the event who are able and willing to help work with the public and explain the various technologies, Ross encourages them to step up and help out.
Ross explained that CV Ready is the onetime daughter organization and current parent organization of the Fire Safe Council. As a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization, they received a grant a number of years ago from the L.A. County Health Dept. over three years for preparedness and community resilience projects. The funds went toward buying equipment and creating other events like Saturday’s and, though the money is spent, the equipment is still being put to use to educate the public. At the expo some of the equipment will be set up to demonstrate what an emergency information center would look like during times of need. The center would include generators and have lights when everyone else’s have gone out. If there are residents in the area who need a charge for their medical devices or personal electronics, CV Ready will offer charging as well as news dissemination.
To avoid that need in times of emergency, there are other options to create power ranging from hand-cranked radios to generators small enough to hide almost anywhere. Many of these will be on display.
“Since information is ultimately how people can connect with resources during any kind of disaster or emergency,” Ross said, “[it’s important to] find various ways to get information into people’s hands. This is just one of the more physical, hardwire system things that people have to have. Information is great, but if you can’t send or receive it, it doesn’t do any good, so we really want to get people connected during emergencies.”