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Ref: California community organizes and conducts response exercise with university


STOCKTON TO PARTICIPATE IN DISASTER PREPAREDNESS EXERCISE




By The Record
November 11, 2007
STOCKTON - The city of Stockton will be participating in a statewide homeland security and disaster preparedness exercise, Golden Guardian 2007, on Wednesday. The exercise will include disaster simulations at University of the Pacific and the Port of Stockton.

"We want to make the community aware that this is just a drill,"

City Manager Gordon Palmer said in a press release. "No one should be alarmed if they see a significant number of public safety vehicles traveling on our city streets or clustered at a particular site. It is all part of the drill."

Even though it's just a drill, participants will be acting as if it is as an actual event. Access to areas where the exercise is taking place will be restricted and traffic will be detoured. For instance, at Pacific, Larry Heller Drive will be closed that day, as will parking Lot 1 near the Spanos Center and the Amos Alonzo Stagg Memorial Stadium. The campus community will still have access to the campus through Mendocino and Kensington avenues and to entrances along Pacific Avenue.

"The event will allow the University emergency response teams to test their ability to respond and communicate with other first responders in the event of a major disaster on the Stockton campus," said Mike Belcher, director of Pacific's Public Safety department.

The Golden Guardian exercise has been in the planning stages for nearly a year. It's all part of a statewide exercise taking place Wednesday in four cities throughout the state: Sacramento, Anaheim, San Jose and Stockton. It is designed to test the response of numerous agencies working together during a catastrophic event. Statewide, the effort will involve 3,000 people from 45 agencies. The event is the largest state-sponsored homeland security exercise in the country.

For more information, contact Bill Costanza, City of Stockton Office of Emergency Services, at (209) 937-8801.

California State University, Stanislaus, also will hold a simulated incident. But the event will take place Friday at the Student Housing Complex in Turlock.

© 2007 RecordNet

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