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The City of Portland, Oregon

Portland Bureau of Emergency Management

Readiness. Response. Recovery.

Phone: 503-823-4375

Fax: 503-823-3903

TDD: 503-823-3947

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City of Portland offering free seismic home improvement class

As part of Earthquake Awareness Month in Oregon, the Portland Bureau of Emergency Management (PBEM) and the Portland Bureau of Development Services (BDS) are co-hosting a free seismic-strengthening presentation Thursday, March 21st at 7:30 p.m. for Southwest Portland residents. Area homeowners are invited to learn the basic, affordable steps involved in reducing the likelihood of earthquake damage to their homes.

BDS inspections manager Jim Nicks will provide an overview of the permitting and construction processes required for seismic home-improvement projects, including a show-and-tell explanation of needed materials. PBEM Director Carmen Merlo will share her own recent experience bracing her century-old house against earthquakes. She’ll also share tips for securing everyday household items. This free event is taking place at the Multnomah Arts Center (MAC) at 7688 SW Capitol Highway from 7:30 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. Parking is available in the MAC parking lot and on-street.

The magnitude 9.0 earthquake in Japan two years ago served as a reminder that Pacific Rim cities, including Portland, are at risk for such a major event (known as a subduction zone earthquake). The last such quake in Oregon struck January 26, 1700. Scientists say it’s only a matter of time before the next big earthquake occurs.

Volunteers from Portland’s Neighborhood Emergency Team (NET) program will also be on hand to share information about community training and preparedness.

WHAT: Residential Seismic Strengthening Presentation

WHEN: Thursday, March 21, 7:30 p.m. to 8:30 p.m.

WHERE: Multnomah Arts Center, 7688 SW Capitol Highway

COST: Free