public safety

Getting Proactive About Recall Safety

Apr 6, 2017

An automobile recall repair notice is a warning that something could go wrong with the car unless a part is replaced or fixed. But many of those warnings are going unheeded. So a new Bay Area business is trying to help.

The non-profit arm of Recall Masters is MotorSafey.org, where anyone can check on any pending recalls that might apply to vehicles they own. Find it here.

A Lesson to be Learned from Fukushima

Apr 3, 2017

The flaws that were disastrously exposed at Japan’s Fukushima nuclear power plant were enabled by that county’s compliant culture, says an internationally recognized physicist. And he believes that holds a lesson for Americans.

The cultural compliancy of the Japanese people may have contributed to the attitudes that enabled the Fuukushima disaster to happen, but Dr. Ohska  says they are now being further tested by the official statements that have come after the nuclear accident.

Asbestos Verdict Fails to Clear the Air at SSU

Mar 28, 2017
Sonoma State Star

For 24 years, Thomas Sargent was an environmental health and safety specialist at Sonoma State. Earlier this month, a Sonoma County civil jury agreed that he'd been harassed and forced to resign under duress in 2015, after complaining about the school's handling of asbestos in Stevenson Hall. But the verdict has not put an end to the concerns, as Steve Mencher reports.

Making the Case for Earthquake Insurance

Oct 26, 2016
CEA

Notwithstanding the earthquake that struck downtown Napa a little more than 2 years ago, our state as a whole has been enjoying an overall lull in significant seismic activity. So the California Earthquake Authority is intensifying its calls for homeowners to take protective steps.

The DIY Earthquake Insurance Premium calculator is on the California Earthquake Authority website here. Watch the video below for additional tips on home earthquake safety.

The Firewatch Continues at Pole Mountain Lookout

Sep 18, 2016
Rhian Miller, KRCB

  Across California, mountaintop fire lookouts are increasingly rare. Spotters can’t penetrate the smog in the southland, and elsewhere, ubiquitous cell phones have diminished the need for them. But in the remote coastal highlands above and east of Jenner, the Pole Mountain Lookout remains active and essential.  Today, reporter Rhian Miller takes us there.

Court Issues Warning on Jury Duty Scam

Aug 31, 2016

  Sonoma County Superior Court has issued a warning of a recent telephone scam that uses a threat of missed jury duty to attempt to scare people into sending money to the caller.

According to the court’s warning, “the caller claims to be a representative of law enforcement and tells the victim that there is a warrant out for their arrest due to failure to appear for jury service. The caller indicates the only remedy to clear the warrant requires the victim to load the money into a credit card and submit it to the caller.”

Aging Drivers Should Plan for Life Without Their Cars

Jun 9, 2016

  Right now, most of the Baby Boom generation is still out driving on the nation’s roads and highways. That can’t continue indefinitely, so then what?

Getting into accidents, even minor ones, or receiving multiple traffic citations are indicators that someone’s driving abilities are waning. But AAA spokewoman Cynthia Harris says there is another important indicator that is not so obvious.

  One tool to prolong the ability to drive safely, suggests Rabon Saip (read his blog here) is widely availabe in Sonoma County.

Rainwater Aids Bodega’s Fire Department

Sep 28, 2015
Bruce Robinson, KRCB

  A low-tech addition to the new Bodega Fire station is expanding their fire-fighting capabilities, while protecting the town’s water supply.

Sonoma County’s Climate Change Vulnerabilities

Mar 12, 2015

Limiting the extent of climate change remains a priority for Sonoma County. But we should be preparing to live with it, too. A new report examines the hazards that need to be addressed.

  Deanne DiPietro, another co-author of the Climate Ready Sonoma County report, is a climate change scientist with the California Landscape Conservation Cooperative. She hopes that this new document will help people to be more pro-active and feel a bit more hopeful about the future.

Task Force Recommendations on Accountability

Mar 6, 2015

  After 14 months, the Community and Local Law Enforcement Task Force convened by Sonoma County Supervisors has made public its varied policy recommendations. Today we conclude our 3-part series on their work with a look at the recommendations from the Law Enforcement Accountability subcommittee.

Task Force Recommendations on Community Policing

Mar 3, 2015

  After 14 months, the Community and Local Law Enforcement Task Force convened by Sonoma County Supervisors has made public its varied policy recommendations. Today we begin a 3-part series with a look at the ideas that came out of its subcommittee on Community Policing.

Community Policing Task Force Recommendations

Dec 14, 2014

Asked to suggest ways to help local law enforcement be more effective and accountable, a citizen task force is calling for more diversity, better training, and improved communications with the people they serve.

The full text of the seven recommendations from the Community Policing subcommittee can be found here.

'Behind the Gates of Gomorrah'

Dec 5, 2014

Napa State Hospital makes headlines when something goes terribly wrong behind its gates. Yet that possibility is there every single day, and many lesser incidents occur without anyone on the outside ever hearing about them. A new book takes readers inside.

  Some of the residents at Napa State Hospital are there after having invoked the "insanity defense" at their trials. But Dr.Seager explains, the way it actually works isn't quite the way it's portrayed on the movies or on TV.

Creating Hope for the Moorland Neighborhood

Nov 6, 2014

  In the year since Andy Lopez was killed, efforts to upgrade the Roseland area and annex it into the city of Santa Rosa have accelerated. But just a little further south, the Moorland neighborhood, where Andy actually lived and died, it’s a different story.

Fire Services: Many Districts, Tight funding

Oct 17, 2014

  Fire protection across Sonoma County is provided by 5 city fire departments plus 19 other independent fire districts, including 15 volunteer departments.  That provides a lot of cherished local control, but financially it’s a model carried over from the last century that may no longer be viable today.  A the direction of the county Board of Supervisors, a series of 10 public meetings to discuss the future of local fire services are being held at fire stations throughout the county.  Here’s what is expected to come out of all that.

Last week California Governor Jerry Brown signed a bill that requires the state develop an earthquake early warning system. Proponents of the system say it would save lives and avoid millions in damage during the next big quake. But as KRCB reports, no one yet knows how the system will be paid for.

Jet Skiers Raise Risks on Russian River

Aug 11, 2014
Sebastopol Times & News

Summer on the lower Russian River is typically tranquil and laid back—but not always. Recent articles in the Sebastopol Times and News have called attention to a recurring noisy hazard on the water. Today we hear from the author of those reports.

Tsunami Preparedness Week

Mar 27, 2014

  Along the entire west coast of the United States, this is Tsunami Preparedness Week, a time each year to highlight emergency planning efforts for both the general public, and coastal infrastructure, such as ports and harbors. Today’s Exchange takes a closer look at that process.