CRESA Emergency Management Blog

Friday, September, 22, 2023 - Nakia Creek After-Action Report (AAR)

Last October's Nakia Creek Fire brought about a wealth of lessons learned that proved to be fruitful in improving our response as both an agency and a community. See the final AAR here.

Tuesday, August 22, 2023 - Wildfire Response - Mapping

On the heels of the Jenny Creek fire while the topic is still fresh in our minds, there are a few things we would like to share about the CRESA role and response during a local (within Clark County) wildfire response, specifically one with evacuation zones present. We believe that the more that community understands about how emergencies are handled, the better we are at working collectively together to ensure a safer place for us all to enjoy living in. First of all let's talk about mapping. 

When a large fire with immediate evacuations like the Jenny Creek Fire pops up, Emergency Management's first priority is to send out a Pubic Alert to the impacted evacuation zones as determined by and requested by the Incident Commander only.  Our second priority is to get a map out to the public that shows the fire location and evacuation zones which features a search bar to enter your address as soon as possible. We learned from the Burnt Bridge Creek Fire in June and decided to adopt a process using Google My Maps. You likely saw this used as the first map link that was posted during the Jenny Creek Fire. It only has the capability to map a polygon and not a radius, so if the official initial shape chosen by the Incident Commander is a radius (often happens because it's fast), ours will look like a diamond (or an octagon as time allows), but the distances will be the same. The purpose is to get a fairly accurate visual out there for citizens to reference ASAP. We are able to get a map out very quickly this way and hope to post a link to it in tandem with the social media confirmations of a Public Alert sent as time allows. 

However, please be aware - once the link is live, it is able to be constantly viewed by the public at the same time as the person updating it is editing it. While updates are being worked on, the link may not work either by not directing, or just sitting there "spinning." If this happens, wait a couple minutes and check back. This is a live tool being updated in a fluid situation. Please be patient and understand that we are doing everything we possibly can to make sure accurate information is being posted in a timely manner. Once the evacuation zones and shapes are refined and stabilized, Clark County GIS personnel will update the live fire map ( that is always available for viewing via a link on our website under the "Current Clark County Alerts" tab. This map is updated based off a live feed of the National Interagency Fire Center ( database that show fire locations/names and more around the whole country. Once evacuation zones are entered into this map and the link is posted in an update for public awareness, the google My Maps link will be taken down to avoid the confusion of multiple maps. As with the My Maps link, the GIS Fire Map is updated while live, so the link may appear to be down for a spell there as well. Please be patient and check back if it isn't working. We are unsure exactly what the impact of tens of thousands of people trying to look at the same map at the same time is too, but it is likely that it can degrade performance and connectivity as well. 

So to recap, here are a few things to remember:

  • Priority 1 is the sending of Public Alerts to evacuation zones as requested by the Incident Commander.
  • Priority 2 is to get an initial Google MyMaps link which includes capability to search an address posted as soon as possible which shows evac zones and fire location.
  • The official, always live Clark County Fire Map as updated by GIS personnel will be updated ASAP. Once it is, the My Maps link will be deleted and be considered obsolete to avoid the confusion of having two maps.
  • Neither link works 100% of the time all the time. Live updates and high traffic can impact your ability to view them. Be patient and try again.

We hope this is helpful to you in the hope that communication can be as good as possible for any future responses as the Wildland Urban Interface (WUI) threat continues to increase in our area.

And don't forget - the single biggest thing you can do right now to be more prepared is to sign up for Public Alerts if you are not already at

Wednesday, August 2nd, 2023 - National Night Out

CRESA Emergency Management staff and state registered volunteers were out and about at 12 different locations within Clark County to help celebrate National Night Out alongside our community partners. National Night Out is an annual event held on the first Tuesday of every August and gives the community a chance to get together and create safe community awareness by meeting neighbors, collaborating with first responders, celebrating volunteerism, and eating hot dogs. Fire Departments, Police Departments, and other public servants alongside numerous private sector and volunteer based partners hosted games, handed out swag and provided food and refreshments all in the name of getting outside and having fun as one happy community. We had a blast and we will see you next year!

National Night Out 2023 Battle Ground

Wednesday, July 19th, 2023 - Cascades Volcano Observatory/International Volcanologist Tour

CVO Tour

Yesterday CRESA Emergency Management staff had the pleasure to host the United States Geological Survey's Cascades Volcano Observatory (CVO) and 12 international volcanologists from the Philippines, Indonesia, Peru, Chile, the Democratic Republic of Congo, Columbia, Costa Rica, and El Salvador. 

The CVO participates in an annual exchange of geology professionals who travel to other countries to not only see how they study volcanos, but also how they handle the impacts that volcanic eruptions and other natural hazards can have on society. Visiting the Clark Regional Emergency Operations Center (CREOC) gave the guests a firsthand insight into the processes, facilities, tools, and systems in place for working with partners and the community to coordinate a unified response to a not only a volcanic eruption, but any other hazard we could locally face.