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Emergency drill educates Garland/local officials

The Garland Fire Chief reported to Garland City Council Wednesday that the emergency drill at the high school earlier in the afternoon went smoothly, with 56 high school students being evacuated to the hospital in just over an hour.  Emergency responders from Garland and Tremonton, as well as federal officials, participated and Menlove stated he would offer the council the final reports once they were compiled.

“There were things that we learned as a department—extensive amounts of stuff,” Chief Kent Menlove said.  Communication between the two fire departments was a big issue that arose.  The departments will be fine tuning which communication frequency to use when they work together in a future emergency situation.

The mock-up was downsized from a larger scale earthquake disaster, to a smaller event involving a supposed explosion in the high school’s science lab.  Despite the smaller event, Menlove thought there was plenty of knowledge gathered from the experience of staging and responding to the drill for the police and fire departments, the emergency crews, as well as the hospital teams.

Menlove also reported that the state will be changing its curriculum and test for Emergency Medical Technicians (EMT’s) to a national curriculum in 2012.  With the new guidelines, state licensed EMT’s credentials will be recognized in any other state.  Currently, Utah EMT’s have to recertify in other states because of differing standards.  Menlove stated that this will affect how Garland will recertify its EMT’s whose credentials expire before the new curriculum is in place.  He said he will apprise the council of future news regarding this issue.

Council member Fred Christensen reported that the city will be changing over from 55 gallon drums to residential-type garbage cans for the city park’s waste disposal.  The lids will allow less rain and sprinkler-water in than with the drums and the cost is comparable to having a large dumpster placed at the park, Christensen said.  These new garbage cans will be green, a different color from the city’s other cans, and will have white stenciling identifying them as city property, to ensure they are kept at the park.

This month Christensen again cautioned local residents to avoid allowing standing water on residential properties to cut down on the mosquito population.  To reduce the risk of bites and mosquito-born diseases, he said, valley residents should spray with DEET repellants and wear long pants and sleeves in the evening hours.

Regarding the spring snowmelt, Mayor Arlon Bennett said so far the city is doing well to alleviate river water from backing up into the city’s spring.  He is keeping a close eye on the water issues.  The city has been running its pumps 24/7 for the previous six days, Bennett said.

He  believes that the city’s new 10-inch water pipes have helped the city’s water situation a great deal and he says Cutler Dam’s release of water into the irrigation system will alleviate problems in the very near future.  However, he still has his eye on what the Logan mountains will do to the spring runoff in the Bear River.

The Garland Library will be sponsoring a summer reading program for children, teens and adults this year Head Librarian Teresa Clark said.  More information will be coming toward the end of May, she said.

Council member Daniel Bowcutt reported that the city’s tourism grant to help with the Wheat and Beet Days was approved.  It is a little bit less than last year’s grant, he said, but nonetheless, it will help alleviate costs.

The Wheat and Beet committee is still asking for help with the parade planning this year.  Parade volunteers will learn the ropes this year and will be in charge for 2012, Bowcutt said.  If you are interested, contact Sharlet at the Garland City offices at 257-3118.


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