Public Safety Commission hopes to see citizens take part in National Preparedness Month

September is National Preparedness Month, and the Public Safety Commission, in its Wednesday, Sept. 7, meeting, discussed the upcoming in-person events and webinars the city will be hosting to help residents prepare for a natural disaster throughout September. All of Malibu’s National Preparedness Month event descriptions, schedules, signups, and other information is posted on the city website at MalibuCity.org/PrepMonth.

Malibu’s Fire Safety Liaison Gregory Hisel said he will be hosting a free Earthquake Preparedness and Home Hazards Training scheduled for Monday, Sept. 19, at City Hall as well as a virtual session on Wednesday, Sept 28, at 6 p.m. The classes help ensure every home is as safe as possible in an earthquake. 

Hisel explained that the trainings are in preparation for the “Great ShakeOut,” which is on Oct. 20 this year. 

The International ShakeOut Day is when millions of people worldwide participate in earthquake drills at work, school, or home. 

At 10:20 a.m., millions of people across California will be practicing earthquake safety. While people are encourage to participate on Oct. 20, a ShakeOut drill for any day of the year, can be registered as well. Multiple locations can be included through video conferencing. For more information, visit shakeout.org. 

“Hopefully well get participants and we will get people prepared … they can exercise their preparation,” Hisel said.

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During the commissioner’s report, Josh Spiegel addressed concerns with water restrictions and said residents should have a good amount of water in case of an emergency. He also encouraged residents to attend the webinars to ensure they are prepared.

“I do think that most of Malibu citizens are underprepared if we do run out of water,” Spiegel said. “I’m interested in the classes, so hopefully, I’ll be able to attend.” 

As the meeting continued, Public Works Director Rob DuBoux reminded the commission about the street closures in preparation of the upcoming Malibu Triathlon this weekend, Sept. 17-18. 

The Malibu Triathlon primarily takes place during the morning hours of Saturday, Sept. 17, and Sunday, Sept. 18. The bicycle portion of the triathlon uses the outer lanes of the Pacific Coast Highway during the hours of 7 to 11 a.m. While thru traffic along Pacific Coast Highway is not obstructed, traffic will be moving at slower speeds. Note that streets connecting directly to PCH will have delays. The LA County Sheriff’s Department will be assisting with traffic and safety. For more information on the triathlon, visit malibutri.com.

Malibu/Lost Hills Sheriff’s Lt. Dustin Carr attended the meeting and provided an update to the commission on the recent events and accidents that occurred in Malibu over the Labor Day weekend and the week prior.

Carr addressed the explosion that was heard by Malibu residents on Friday, Aug. 26, in the western part of the city. The loud explosions were reported around 7 p.m. off Kanan Dume Road near Zumirez Drive. Carr said the suspects were described as juveniles and were seen in a dark blue BMW. 

Carr also addressed the sudden panic that occurred at the Malibu Chili Cook-Off on Saturday, Sept. 3. Footage of fair-goers fleeing the carnival surfaced on the internet after reports about a potential shooting threat. The Malibu/Lost Hills Sheriff’s said there was no shooting and no threat involved. 

“Deputies were right on scene. You can see them on the video walking inside; there was no gun or shots fired or injuries or anything like that,” Carr said. “The person that yelled that disappeared into the crowd, but it was a brief incident, and was quickly handled.” 

Lt. Carr gave a brief homeless update as they are awaiting the report and will give a full report at the upcoming City Council meeting. 

Carr also addressed the fatal traffic accident that occurred on Sunday, Sept. 4, on Malibu Canyon Road just north of PCH. North and southbound lanes of Malibu Canyon were completely shut from PCH to Civic Center Way around 4:30 p.m. and didn’t reopen until 7:30.

Carr ended his report with crime statistics and said there was an increase in burglaries in July but a decrease in August. Carr also reminded the panel of the Coffee with a Cop event at the Malibu Farmers Market on Sunday, Sept. 18, which unintentionally coincides with the Malibu Triathlon.  

Earlier in the meeting, Public Safety Liaison Luis Flores provided an update on the temporary day-use impound yard and said they towed 63 vehicles over the Labor Day weekend, although that number was later corrected to 75 by Commission Chair Chris Frost. The total stands as the most cars towed in one weekend since the yard began operation on June 18. 

Flores said there has been a total of 293 tows since June 18. The impound yard will be in operation until Oct. 3.

Later, the commissioners discussed possible locations for a permanent impound yard.

“We need to be able to establish that we’ve done everything we can to look for locations and while still addressing our priorities of persevering that open space and protecting the environment which is in our mission,” Commissioner Daphne Anneet said. 

Spiegel motioned to create an ad hoc committee with Anneet and himself to explore a permanent tow yard site for summer 2023 and bring it back to the committee. Motion passed unanimously. 

The next Public Safety Commission meeting is scheduled for Wednesday, Oct. 5. 

Samantha Bravo
Samantha Bravo
Samantha Bravo is an inspiring photojournalist based in Los Angeles California. She began her journalism career at Pierce College Media Arts Department. Twitter @samanthavbravo

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