TV Tacoma to air program on terrorism

What are the symptoms of anthrax? Is Tacoma’s water supply safe? Who do business owners call when they receive a bomb threat? Should citizens buy gas masks?
A panel of six experts will answer these and other citizens’ questions regarding the threat of terrorist attacks and Tacoma’s response during an hour-long special program on TV Tacoma which will begin airing at 5 p.m., Nov. 16 and replay through the end of November.
The panel, co-moderated by Sgt. Jim Jensen, Tacoma Police Department, and Deputy Chief Gary Steinhoff, Tacoma Fire Department, includes:
n Gary Schiesz, Deputy Chief, Tacoma Fire Department;
n Captain Catherine Woodard, Oper-ations South Division Commander, Tacoma Police Department;
n Marcia Patrick, RN, Infection Control Manager, MultiCare Health System;
n Jeff Cortazzo, MD, Emergency De-partment Physician, Franciscan Health System;
n Monica Raymond, MPH, RN, Nurse Epidemiologist, Tacoma-Pierce County Health Department; and
n Al Medak, Water Quality Manager, Tacoma Water.
“There is much more rumor and bad information out there than fact,” said Jeff Jensen, assistant Fire chief.
“By correcting those inaccuracies and showing that Tacoma is ready to respond if an event should ever occur, we hope to help calm people. Panic is our worst internal enemy in the event of any crisis.”
During the hour-long presentation, the panel will answer questions from a studio audience comprised of citizens, business owners and organizations regarding how to respond to perceived or verified terrorist threats, including anthrax, bomb scares and more.
The emergency response experts will also share Tacoma’s comprehensive, coordinated response to any incidents and current scenario planning exercises dealing specifically with how the city would respond to bio-chemical incidents or explosions.
“The Tacoma Police Department takes seriously its role in emergency preparedness, as the safety of our citizens is our first priority,” said Tacoma Police Assistant Chief David Brame.
“We use the incident command system, specialized training and special teams in response to a variety of emergencies. Our intelligence unit conducts and evaluates threat assessments with the cooperation from other local, state, and federal agencies.”
On Oct. 23, the City of Tacoma – led by the Tacoma Fire Department – opened an information clearinghouse for information related to perceived terrorist threats.
The one-stop center continues to take calls and requests from citizens, businesses and organizations between 8 a.m. and 4 p.m. Monday through Friday, at 253/404-3700.
The city has also put up a Web site of emergency information at:
The Web site includes links to Pierce County, state, federal and other emergency management agencies.
The special presentation on terrorist threats will replay on TV Tacoma, cable channel 12 on Click! Network and AT&T, at the following times:
n Nov. 16 – 5 p.m.;
n Nov. 17 – 1 a.m., 9 a.m., 6 p.m.;
n Nov. 18 – 4 p.m., 9 p.m.;
n Nov. 19 – 5 a.m., 9 p.m.;
n Nov. 20 – 5 a.m., 1 p.m., midnight;
n Nov. 21 – 10 a.m., 9 p.m.;
n Nov. 22 – 2 p.m., 10 p.m.;
n Nov. 23 – 5 p.m.;
n Nov. 24 – 1 a.m., 9 a.m., 6 p.m.;
n Nov. 25 – 4 p.m., 9 p.m.;
n Nov. 26 – 5 a.m., 9 p.m.;
n Nov. 27 – 5 a.m., 1 p.m., midnight;
n Nov. 28 – 10 a.m., 9 p.m.;
n Nov. 29 – 2 p.m., 10 p.m.; and
n Nov. 30 – 5 p.m.