Following the success of three prior summits, the Cumberland County LEPC was well underway toward planning its fourth SARA summit. With the summit scheduled for October 2020, vendors were being sourced, speakers were being lined up, food orders being prepared, and plenty of other moving pieces were well underway. Then came March 2020 when everything shut down. Not knowing how long this would last - a few months we hoped - planning continued at a ferocious pace for the summit still many months away. As the months rolled by, some of which felt like merely days, the summit drew nearer with no clear forecast of what or if public gatherings would be permissible. It was ultimately determined to postpone the summit and set our sights on 2021.
Fast forwarding a little over a year with the global health landscape still uncertain, but improving, the Cumberland County LEPC hosted its fourth summit in five years. With the goal of bringing together county emergency responders, elected officials, emergency management, SARA facilities and more, this year's summit was held with much enthusiasm, albeit with the addition of a few safety protocols.
This year featured another packed schedule filled with local and regional speakers representing the National Weather Service, Vitro Glass, and more. Even the committee's own Gary Rutz discussed the importance of building relationships with your local emergency responders before an emergency. With the theme "Ready. Set. Prepared.", the summit focused on measures to prepare your facility for both the known and unknown. Much of this boiled down to familiarity with your own levels of risk and preparedness and how to turn that knowledge into tangible aspects geared toward protection and prevention against various hazards.
We would like to thank those of you that attended this year's summit as well as our sponsors and speakers. It is because of your support and continued desire to learn and be better prepared today than you were yesterday that this summit continues its successful trajectory. It is the LEPC's goal to continue improving the summit, becoming an annual fixture for the betterment of the community and its citizens.
With another summit in the rearview mirror, we turn our sights toward the horizon once again and begin planning for next year. Stay tuned for more information and a Save the Date for the 2022 Summit coming soon!
If you are interested in joining the committee as a member, or if you're already a member and would like to learn about how you can do more to help both this committee and the community, please contact us at email@example.com.