Kenwood Press


Serving the communities of Kenwood, Glen Ellen and Oakmont

email print
News: 12/01/2017

Oakmont post-fire lessons



By Marty Thompson and Jim Brewer

Oakmont residents offered stories of their evacuations and suggestions for improving emergency notification at a workshop sponsored by the Oakmont Village Association board on Nov. 14.

Some people told how Citizens Organized to Prepare for Emergencies (COPE) notifications worked for them the morning of Oct. 9; others said they awakened and got out on their own.

“In an emergency your neighbors are your closest family,” said Sue Hattendorf who organized and runs COPE.

Audience suggestions included pushing the city to install emergency warning sirens, equipping COPE volunteers with bullhorns, and recruiting more COPE volunteers.

“It’s on us to prepare for emergencies,” declared board member Linda Oneto, who led the workshop which drew 200 people to Berger Center.

Dealing with post-fire stress

Residents got encouragement from Dr. Dana Nussbaum, a licensed psychologist in Novato who specializes in the health and well-being of emergency responders and their families.

“If you feel like you’re down in the dumps? Guess what? You’re normal,” she said. “Post trauma response” emotions can range from depression and anger to loneliness or guilt, she said. These emotions normally would dissipate in about 30 days, but “this event was so much bigger than a single fire. There were multiple factors that added to peoples’ stress level.”

Nussbaum, who lives in Sonoma County, said it’s often easier to recognize stress in others than ourselves. “So if you hear more than one person express concern about how you are doing, it might be a good time to check in with yourself.”

Stress responses from the fires might be triggered again by the anniversary date, by wind, or even the smell of smoke coming from a neighbor’s fireplace, she said. The key “is to notice these situations and realize they are normal,” Nussbaum said.

If, towards mid- or late-December you or someone you care about is still suffering and it hasn’t dissipated, or if you’re experiencing distressing intrusive thoughts or unable to sleep, it may be time to seek a professional who is trained to help alleviate these post-fire stress responses. Again, such stress responses are normal, just particularly strong. The sooner you deal with them the sooner you will feel better.



Recently Published:

07/01/2018 - SDC study recommends confining development to existing campus
07/01/2018 - History volunteer and docent opportunities
07/01/2018 - Congratulations Kenwood and Dunbar students!
07/01/2018 - Recovery workshops scheduled
07/01/2018 - Regional Parks funding measure returns to supervisors in July
07/01/2018 - Correction
07/01/2018 - Docent training for education program at Quarryhill
07/01/2018 - Whole community the focus of new Sustainable Sonoma
07/01/2018 - Reminder: No outdoor burning!
07/01/2018 - Public input sought on bike and ped master plan
07/01/2018 - Letters to the Editor July 1, 2018
07/01/2018 - Valley of the Moon Festival explores 'Vienna In Transition'
07/01/2018 - Sonoma groundwater agency puts brakes on fee study
07/01/2018 - Join the team at Jack London, Sugarloaf
07/01/2018 - Getting back up...

Community Calendar

A mindful walk
07/15/2018
more...
“Global Crisis and the American Dream – America First or America as a World Leader?”
07/18/2018
more...
Buck Institute speaker at next Cal Alumni dinner
07/19/2018
more...
Join the team at Jack London, Sugarloaf
07/21/2018
more...
Learn about butterflies, dragons and more
07/21/2018
more...
Grandparents’ Week fun for everyone
07/22/2018
more...
Docent training for education program at Quarryhill
07/25/2018
more...
Free books in town
07/28/2018
more...
Ancient trees, ghost cats and the urbanization of plants at Quarryhill lecture series
07/28/2018
more...
Perfect Pairing: Wisdom & Wine
08/05/2018
more...
Perfect Pairing: Wisdom & Wine
08/05/2018
more...


Weather Underground PWS KCAKENWO2