Vision: All sectors of the community work together to create a disaster resilient region
The goals of the Hazards Mitigation Plan for the Thurston Region are the policy framework for hazard mitigation decision-making. Five goals serve to protect what is most important to the community: people; infrastructure; property; environment; and economy. Four goals are critical for achieving the plan’s vision – the effort required to create a disaster resilient region: building community support; expanding understanding of hazards; implementing effective mitigation strategies; and increasing community awareness.
The objectives define actions or results that can be translated into measurable terms and specific assignments for implementation. Each mitigation initiative identified in the core plan and in the plan partners’ annexes tie to one or more objectives.
1. Protect life
Design, build, operate, and maintain disaster resistant communication systems that provide emergency notifications and instructions.
Decrease the impacts of hazards on at risk individuals or special needs populations.
Address emergency evacuation needs, prioritizing areas of the community where mitigation strategies are ineffective or cost prohibitive.
Train and equip emergency service providers to effectively respond to hazard events.
2. Protect infrastructure
Maintain and upgrade roads, bridges, and other transportation infrastructure and services to withstand the effects of hazards without prolonged operational disruptions.
Maintain and upgrade utility systems and services to withstand the effects of hazards.
Maintain or replace public buildings such as offices, schools, and other facilities to withstand the effects of hazards.
Strengthen or relocate critical facilities or create protective spaces or infrastructure around them so they are not significantly affected by the effects of hazards
3. Protect property
Minimize the number of properties that are situated in hazard prone locations.
Protect and preserve vital records, data, information technology systems, and facility contents.
Safeguard objects or places that have cultural or historic significance.
4. Protect the environment
When possible, use mitigation strategies that preserve ecological functions of natural systems.
Consider mitigation actions that restore natural systems that provide protective measures to surrounding properties.
Continue evaluating the effectiveness of Critical Areas Ordinances and development regulations and revise as necessary to ensure development does not occur in areas prone to hazards or changing environmental conditions that threaten public safety.
Support efforts to increase local jurisdictions’ abilities to appropriately respond to hazardous material releases.
5. Sustain the economy
Develop and maintain efforts to prepare recovery plans.
Focus on mitigation strategies that protect medical treatment centers, employment centers, commercial districts, and schools.
Coordinate with regional, state, and federal agencies to identify and prioritize continuity of operations on lifeline transportation corridors and systems.
Strengthen public-private partnerships to reinforce or establish redundancy for critical supply systems.
Develop and maintain continuity of operations plans for essential public safety services.
6. Build community support
Coordinate and provide leadership in the hazard mitigation planning process among local, tribal, state, and federal government entities.
Engage residents, businesses, employers, medical centers, utility companies, subject matter experts, community, and faith-based organizations as partners to help identify opportunities to strengthen the region’s hazard resilience.
Update the region’s Hazards Mitigation Plan every five years, or sooner if necessary to respond to emerging threats.
7. Expand understanding of hazards
Monitor and evaluate precipitation, groundwater, and stream flow levels, and survey flood high water marks.
Partner with state and federal agencies, colleges, universities, and non-governmental organizations to participate in modeling programs to map high risk hazard areas.
Participate in regional or statewide disaster scenario exercises to assess mitigation, preparedness, response, and recovery capacities, and apply lessons learned to mitigation activities.
Develop a better understanding of the location and mitigation needs of vulnerable and special needs populations within the communities.
Document, share, and act on lessons learned following disaster events.
8. Implement effective mitigation strategies
Focus mitigation efforts on the region’s greatest risks and vulnerabilities.
Integrate adopted mitigation strategies into other planning documents such as response plans, comprehensive plans, strategic plans, Critical Areas Ordinances, Capital Facility Plans, zoning code, and development regulations.
Apply for federal mitigation assistance grants and leverage other funding sources to finance mitigation projects.
9. Increase public awareness
Develop and sustain ongoing communication campaigns with residents, customers, businesses, and other stakeholders about the known risks of hazard events and the actions that community members or organizations can take to prevent or minimize losses.
Conduct broad outreach activities to engage all sectors of the community in the hazards mitigation planning process