Disaster Response

What to Do in an Emergency
Disaster Preparedness Guidance for The Sea Ranch (PDF)
Organized to Respond
The Operations Section: Orange and Red Vests
The Sea Ranch Medical Response Team
Staging Areas and Emergency Shelters
Planning, Logistics, and Finance Sections
Workspace for Disaster Operations Staff and Volunteers
Resources for Disaster Operations personnel


If you are interested in joining the Disaster Response team, please contact 707-785-2444.

Organized to Respond

To respond to any emergency, The Sea Ranch Association has in place an extensive organization of staff and volunteers prepared to check conditions in every neighborhood, establish any needed staging areas or shelters, and respond to medical needs appropriately. Read this page so you will know what to expect in an emergency.

What is the Incident Command System (ICS)?

We have established an organizational structure used by all levels of government (federal, state, and local) called the Incident Command System (ICS):

  • All emergency responders use the same terminology, processes, and communications. ICS facilitates the coordination of our team with the Sonoma County Office of Emergency Services, CalFire, the Sea Ranch Volunteer Fire Department, Coast Life Support, and RCMS.
  • Because we use the ICS for every kind of incident, regular small incidents give our teams practice in the skills they will need in a large emergency.

The following chart shows the Sea Ranch ICS, headed by our Incident Commander. Note the four functional sections.

Incident Command Staff
Incident Command Staff

The Operations Section: Yellow-lime Vests

It's an emergency and there's your neighbor wearing a bright yellow-lime vest and talking into a walkie-talkie. She's the neighborhood Damage Assessor walking the neighborhood to assess damages, identify medical needs, and report up the chain of command.

  • Each damage assessor is equipped with a go-bag, walkie-talkie, a crescent wrench, glowsticks, and chalk to mark houses where help is needed.
  • Each volunteer has participated in regular training sessions and practice drills.
  • They have learned from their neighbors the locations of propane shut-off valves, any special hazards on individual properties, and any special needs of residents.
  • Each volunteer has signed a confidentiality statement on file at the Association Office so that members can feel comfortable sharing their special needs.

These teams of damage assessors are organized into 20 divisions, with a leader for each division. Each Division Leader receives reports from the damage assessors and relays the information to the Branch Managers and other members of the Incident Command Staff. There is a Branch Manager for each of the three staging areas at the Lodge, Ohlson Ranch Center, and the Del Mar Center.

During an emergency, an Emergency Operations Center will be activated at the Association Office on Annapolis Road. Three staging areas will manned by volunteers at the Lodge, the Ohlson Ranch House, and the Del Mar Ranch House. If necessary, the CalFire station on Annapolis Road will function as a treatment center and transport hub for the more seriously injured.

The Sea Ranch Medical Response Team

Supporting the Operations Section staff and volunteers is a roster of doctors, nurses, a paramedic, and EMR personnel who are volunteering their time to be part of the medical team. The Medical Response Team holds its own regular practice exercises to deploy to the staging areas, work out processes, and practice communications. The exercises are realistic and specific, with CalFire Captain Shelley Spear notifying the team of specific injuries so the group can work together to respond.

Team members dress in red medical jackets with a Sea Ranch medical logo so residents can identify them during an emergency. In an emergency, each team member will go initially to their closest staging area.


Staging Areas and Emergency Shelters

There are three staging areas (known as Branch Operations Centers and Emergency Shelters) located throughout The Sea Ranch. They are the Del Mar House and Hall, the Ohlson Ranch House, and The Sea Ranch Lodge. During a disaster the Branch Managers will operate from these locations and then, if conditions warrant, the Disaster Response Team will set these areas up as emergency shelters. Throughout the disaster or emergency, the Medical Response Teams will be in place at these locations.

Each location has a generator, pots and pans, blankets, emergency food, hygiene and first aid supplies. Note: The shelters do not have medicine for chronic conditions, so members should stock their own supplies for diabetes, heart conditions, and other conditions.

Supplies trailer. Copyright Louise DeWilder

Planning, Logistics, and Finance Sections

The Planning Section has work to do before, during, and after an emergency incident. These volunteers prepare Incident Action Plans and maps. They maintain the status of resources, such as fire equipment, during the incident. They collect, evaluate, and disseminate tactical information about every incident.

The Logistics Section provides incident personnel with facilities, transportation, supplies, equipment maintenance, food, communications, and medical services.

The Finance Section handles the budget and the bills.

Workspace for Disaster Operations Staff and Volunteers

Emergency Management Base Map & Division Maps
Click on the Division number to view the individual Division map

Resources for Disaster Operations Personnel

California Emergency Management Agency: http://www.calema.ca.gov

Emergency Management - Favorite Websites - January 2016