Devastating Landslide in Washington Sparks Reflection

  • March 27, 2014
  • Andrea Tolentino

Devastating Landslide in Washington Sparks Reflection

Our thoughts and prayers are going out to those affected by the recent mudslide in Oso, Washington. Living approximately 50 miles from this horrible landslide in Snohomish County has made me and others rethink our own preparedness and current business continuity plans. For example, what would you do if there was a disaster near you? Do you evacuate or relocate to another location that might be safer? What is the criteria for determining a disaster? Do you base on a level of severity or duration? How do you contact the critical employees and vendors if something horrible like a deathly landslide were to happen near you? These are important questions to think about before a disaster happens, in order to be more prepared if something were to happen.

Sometimes it takes an incident or disaster to occur, to spark business continuity and disaster recovery conversation within the workplace and at home. When an incredible tragedy happens like this, it is truly heartbreaking to see the impact it has on a community. Everyone in the community bands together to do whatever they can to help in the response process and all work very hard to make a difference. From this I have learned, it is a time to give your kids an extra squeeze and review your own preparedness plan. One of the best ways to mature your business continuity plans is to learn from actual disasters and then review your own current plan to make changes.

My advice to everyone in this time of sadness is to think about your own preparedness plans for your family and at your work. By planning ahead of time, it can help in streamlining your overall recovery process.

Resources: Where to go to help mudslide victims:

  • United Way of Snohomish County has established a community-wide recovery fund to assist those affected by the mudslide. Information on how to donate is at Checks may be sent to: United Way of Snohomish County, Attn: Finance Dept., 3120 McDougall Ave., Ste. 200, Everett, WA 98201.
  • The Cascade Valley Hospital Foundation is a local organization that is giving 100 percent of donations directly to those affected. The Cascade Valley Hospital in Arlington treated several victims in the aftermath of the mudslide. Donate at this site or by phone at 360-435-2133, ext. 7805. You can drop off/mail donations to 330 S. Stillaguamish Ave. in Arlington or donate to the fund through an account at Union Bank in downtown Arlington, 525 N. Olympic Ave.
  • The Salvation Army is collecting donations for local disaster relief efforts. Donate by phone at 800-725-2769, online at or by mail to the Salvation Army, Northwest Divisional Headquarters, 111 Queen Anne Avenue N. #300, Seattle, WA, 98109. Designate your gift as “disaster relief.”

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