In the event of an emergency or disaster, it’s critical that every resident knows what is expected of them, and how the town is prepared to help. Should the Town of Wolfville be victim of flood, fire, explosion, or other such unexpected disaster, emergency preparedness is important.
Everyone should be prepared to take care of themselves and their families for up to three days (72 hours) in the event of an emergencyor disaster. Should an evacuation be required, all residents should be aware of Wolfville’s evacuation plan.
The Wolfville Evacuation Plan consists of 12 zones, each with a Zone Commander responsible for that zone. Each zone has an exit and entry point to alleviate traffic congestion. It is understood that Zone Commanders are under the immediate direction of a Town Official (i.e. Police or Fire). The Zone Commander may assist Police and Fire personnel. Town residents are asked to make themselves familiar with their evacuation zones.
If any zone within the town is to be evacuated, the Zone Commander within that hot zone (i.e., a zone immediately threatened) will not be required to put themselves in jeopardy. These HOT ZONES will be solely under the direction of emergency personnel.
Each zone has both an exit and an entrance depending on the location of the emergency. Residents and Zone Commanders will be advised as to which direction traffic should proceed to evacuate the zone as safely and quickly as possible.
A brief hazard analysis of potential dangers to Wolfville follows which describes the possible likelihood of each type of disaster.
During the winter months, severe weather conditions often occur in this area including heavy snowfalls, ice storms, and severe winds. Long-term power outages resulting from these conditions can cause severe hardship.
Damage by wind and snow can be complicated by the action of our local tides. Though flooding is infrequent, seasonal high tides (approx. 20 year cycle) combined with heavy snowmelt can pose a flood threat.
The Wolfville Fire Department responds to approximately 130 calls a year. The majority of these alarms are considered minor, however, there is potential for a large-scale fire in the downtown core and in other large buildings located in the town. Some of these buildings, if not physically connected, are in close proximity to each other. Many of these buildings are older, and their construction (wood frame) makes for easy fire-spread.
The restaurants of Wolfville all use propane gas, and though the use of propane under normal circumstances is safe, accidents can rupture storage tanks, valves, or feed lines.
Heavy snowfalls, frequent changes in occupancy, and building fatigue might place undue stress on buildings and contribute to their collapse. Other disastrous occurrences, such as, flood, fire, or explosion might jeopardize the stability of any structure.
Wolfville's proximity to the 101 Highway creates perhaps the town's greatest threat for disaster. Hazardous agents are continuously transported along this highway and our location below the highway makes us vulnerable to accidents involving spilled liquids or gaseous materials heavier than air. The spillage would run downhill into the town, and, uncontrolled, these substances may pose a serious threat to public health and safety.
There are many situations that might result in the cessation of power, including severe winds or a winter ice storm. Power outages can last several days or even weeks.