If Alaska came under missile attack, what's the protocol?
The state of Alaska Homeland Security and Emergency Management says a missile launch to Alaska is highly unlikely, as the state is not a high-priority target. However, anything is possible, and in the event a missile warning was issued, here are a few things people can do.
“Try to find protective cover in the building that you're in, or get into a building that can protect you from the blast and any type of fallout radioactive material that may be associated with the blast,” Jeremy Zidek with the State of Alaska Division of Homeland Security and Emergency Management said. “It's a difficult situation. We don't want to tell people to evacuate and then they are caught out in the open and then caught in the blast and radioactive material.”
The Anchorage School District also has a protocol in place to keep our kids safe during school should a major event happen.
“We would probably revert to training already in place,” ASD Senior Director for Security, Safety and Emergency Preparedness Joe Schmidt said. “Duck cover and hold, lockdown and shelter-in-place drills would make the most sense. Student safety number one, first. I say to open up the doors, I think we'd be careful who is coming and going. Not to predict what the missile is carrying, but there is probably going to be fire and smoke and other toxins to deal with so, like, I say, we practice these things several times a year.”
The school district has 22 conexes or trailers set up from Girdwood to Chugiak at designated emergency sites. The conexes contain cots, blankets and other supplies that can serve up to 1000 people. The conexes, however, do not contain water or food.
“Getting fresh water into these places and food would be one of our top priorities,” Schmidt said. “It would have to be hauled in from somewhere, but if we are in that scenario, the Anchorage Municipality and the Red Cross would take over and we would hand the operations over to them.”
Homeland Security says while it is unlikely a missile will be fired at Alaska, what needs to be done now is prepare-- not only for an attack but more something in the more immediate future, a natural disaster.
“We feel what’s really important is that Alaskans instead prepare for natural disasters,” Zidek said. “We know these are going to happen. Earthquakes, volcanos, Tsunamis, wildfires, floods, landslides-- the list really goes on and on.”
In the example of an earthquake, there are many secondary effects, similar to what may happen with a missile strike.
“These can cause landslides, avalanches and even an ocean or even coastal Tsunami,” Zidek said. “These are all things people who live in Alaska need to be aware of. Know the threats your community may face and then prepare for those.”
When you see warning signs that a natural disaster is imminent, act, act quickly and let others know how to act.
If a missile were to hit somewhere in Alaska, take cover inside your home or place of work to shield yourself from flying debris and radiation. Wear as many layers of clothing as you can to protect yourself from flying debris and radiation. Make sure you have plenty of fresh water and food on hand-- at least seven days worth, at the very minimum, is the Alaska requirement.
Copyright 2018 KTVA. All rights reserved.
YOU MAY ALSO BE INTERESTED IN: