CALL 9-1-1! Bishop-Wisecarver felt like a castle for a good 15 minutes today as water from a toppled-over fire hydrant across the street flooded the entrance to our property, rising quite a few inches around the tires of cars parked out front. Turned out a massive semi turning the street corner near our building clipped the hydrant, releasing a 20-or-so-foot-high tower of gushing white water. We're fine, by the way! After alerting police dispatchers about the high-pressure fountain that popped up like a geyser, the city quickly sent a fire crew to the rescue, so within minutes the flow died down and some public works crew went to work scraping away the gravel debris that washed up to our walkway.
BE PREPARED All that ruckus came with uncanny timing because we had just been writing an intro to our monthly newsletter about being prepared. It is, we learned, National Emergency Preparedness Month, a time to check, update and double-check the safety precautions in place at work, at home and in your mind. It's important in event of a crisis, however harmless it may turn out to be, to know where to go, what to do, who to call. Commit to memory the emergency escape plan, for example (something we're reminded of quite often here in earthquake country). Or have a list of emergency and non-emergency phone numbers for your local fire and police departments.
KAIZEN Continuous improvement, lean manufacturing and the concept of "kaizen" all apply to your company's emergency preparedness, too. Make sure your employees' training and the company-wide emergency response plan is up-to-date.
BACK TO NORMAL The water drained pretty quick once the firefighters capped off the burst. And honestly, once we realized all was safe and no more water was being wasted, we sort of had a bit of fun capturing snapshots of the whole scene. Here are a couple more ...