Pacifica Police Launches 'Map Your Neighborhood' Program to Prepare for Disaster

Americas, October 28 2013

The ‘Map Your Neighborhood’ program is part of a continued effort by the Pacifica Police Department to increase community collaboration in the event of a disaster.

During the upcoming fall and winter months, the Pacifica Police Department and its Community Emergency Response Team (CERT) volunteers will be organizing “Map Your Neighborhood” programs in Pacifica’s neighborhoods.

The “Map Your Neighborhood” (MYN) is a program designed to help neighborhoods prepare for disasters to build a stronger, more resilient community by neighbors being connected and ready to help each other in times of need.

A single disaster may cause many individual emergencies at one time. Unfortunately, the police or fire department may not be able to respond to all calls for assistance in a timely manner. Professional emergency response to your situation may be delayed for hours, even days. Out of necessity, you and your neighbors become the first responders to your emergencies. Preparing your neighborhood is vital. Neighbors that are prepared are more effective in their response to a disaster and have an increased capacity to be self-sufficient in the first 72 hours after a disaster.

Map Your Neighborhood will help you to:

  • Learn 9 steps to take immediately following a disaster to secure your home and to protect your neighborhood. These steps will help you to quickly and safely take actions that can minimize damage and protect lives.
  • Identify the skills and equipment each neighbor has that would be useful in an effective disaster response. Knowing which neighbors have supplies and skills helps your disaster response be timely, and allows everyone to contribute to the response in a meaningful way.
  • Create a contact list that helps identify those with specific needs such as persons with disabilities, older people, or children who may be home alone during certain hours of the day.
  • Work together as a team to evaluate your neighborhood during the first hour following a disaster and take the necessary actions.

The MYN and CERT programs are part of a continued effort by the Pacifica Police Department to increase community collaboration in the area of disaster preparedness.

If you would like more information on becoming a CERT volunteer, please contact Captain Joe Spanheimer at 650-738-7314 or

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