10th annual Disaster Awareness and Safety Day

RAPID CITY, S.D. (KOTA TV) - The Pennington County Emergency Management hosted their annual disaster awareness and safety day Sunday afternoon.

This is the 10th year they have hosted their annual disaster awareness and safety day and the third year at Main Street Square.

Pennington County Emergency Management deputy director, Alexa White, says "we have about 20, I think 28 different agencies on 6th Street and here in the square talking about disaster awareness, preparedness, and safety tips. Our theme this year is the zombie apocalypse. If you prepare for the zombies, you'll be prepared for anything. We have groups like WAVI, we have Black Hills Information Security talking about cyber security issues, we have the landfill talking about proper disposal of trash.”

Another one of those agencies was the Western States Fire Protection Company whose goal is to protect lives and property.

One way to do that is installing fire sprinklers into your home.

Western States Fire Protection Company design manager for residential design, Dexter Johnson, explains “if you have a fully operational fire sprinkler system in your home, the chances of you getting out are much higher. Just because it gives you that, it's also putting the fire out and stopping the spread and slowing it down so when a house can become fully engulfed rather quickly, having that suppression on the fire will help give you more time to get out."

The Rapid City Fire Department has two stations who specialize in responding to major incidents. When that happens they take their trailer full of tools to help with the situation.

Rapid City firefighter/medic, Scott Frey, states “our disaster response trailer is specifically to trench rescue and building collapse, structure collapse, is primarily what's in here. We can do a lot of other things as well. It's basically equipped with a bunch of power tools, a lot of shoring, and other specialty tools we can use to help mitigate a situation after it's, anything else happening after it's occurred."

One of the most important keys to take away is to have a plan.

Practice an evacuation plan in case of an emergency because it could save your life.

"It's always good to practice these and have then and talk about them beforehand so the kids can do it distinctively when it comes down to it instead of panicking in that mode and not understanding what to do or understanding if the firefighters are coming in, not to be scared, not to hide. And if they can get themselves out, it also just keeps people from being in danger going into look for them," says Johnson.

For more information how to be prepared when disaster strikes visit rcpcem.com.