Home Emergency Management News EDM Wednesday Briefing: Earthquake Strikes Near Nuclear Plant in Tennessee
EDM Wednesday Briefing: Earthquake Strikes Near Nuclear Plant in Tennessee

EDM Wednesday Briefing: Earthquake Strikes Near Nuclear Plant in Tennessee

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Emergency and disaster management briefing for December 12, 2018: A moderate earthquake struck near a nuclear plant early Wednesday morning in Eastern Tennessee, French authorities say the shooting in Strasbourg was an act of terror, USDA recalls Jimmy Dean sausage links over possible metal contamination, three officers were shot while serving a family violence warrant in Houston, Texas, a lawsuit filed alleges the gas well operator ignored warnings that a piece of safety equipment was malfunctioning before the January explosion in Oklahoma, a California forestry official says avoiding building homes in high-risk areas may be the key to preventing future wildfire tragedies, a bomb threat prompted an evacuation at Facebook's Silicon Valley location, and a newly approved dam could boost development and increase power availability in Tanzania but poses other risks.

  1. Eastern Tennessee was hit with a moderate 4.4 earthquake at about 4:15 a.m. Wednesday morning, which was centered approximately 6.8 miles North-Northeast of Decatur, Tennessee. According to the U.S. Geological Survey, the earthquake was at a shallow depth of about 5.5 miles (9.0 km), and shaking was felt throughout the area, and into Georgia, with citizen reports of shaking being felt in Alabama, Kentucky, North and South Carolina. The temblor was the second strongest to strike Eastern Tennessee, and was followed just 10 minutes later with a 3.3 aftershock, but there have been no reports of injuries or damages from the either quake.  
  2. A shooting on Tuesday in Strasbourg, France, that left three people dead, is being treated as an act of terror by French authorities who revealed the suspect shouted "Allahu Akbar" before opening fire. Several other people were wounded when the gunman opened fire in downtown Strasbourg at around 8:00 p.m. Authorities had been trying to arrest the suspect immediately before the shooting began, and the suspect was shot and wounded by officers before he fled the scene and remains on the run.  
  3. A recall has been issued for Jimmy Dean sausage for possible metal contamination in the links. The recall applies to, "Jimmy Dean HEAT 'n SERVE Original SAUSAGE LINKS made with Pork & Turkey," with a use by date of January 31, 2019, and an establishment number 19085 on the back of the package. The U.S. Department of Agriculture's Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS) says it is still determining which states and stores sold the product and will publish the information as soon as it becomes available.  
  4. Three officers in Houston, Texas were shot and wounded on Tuesday while attempting to serve a family violence warrant to an individual at an area home. The officers, two investigators from the Harris County Sheriff's Office, and five agents from the Fugitive Apprehension Unit--part of the  Texas Attorney General's Office--were attempting to serve the warrant when the suspect opened fire on them, striking three of the officers. The deputies returned fire, but a five hour standoff with police and tactical squad officers ensued before the suspect was found dead inside the home of a self-inflicted gunshot wound.  
  5. A lawsuit filed against the operating company of the gas well during the January 22, 2018 explosion at the well in Quinton, Oklahoma, alleges that the operating company ignored warnings that a problem existed with the rig's accumulator. According to the court filing, an email was received by the Patterson rig superintendent, manager, and other employees, warning that laboratory tests revealed problems with a piece of safety equipment--the rig's accumulator--that closes part of the well to prevent an uncontrolled release of fluids. Findings from the U.S. Chemical Safety and Hazard Investigation Board found that the accumulator was not able to fully close on the day the blast occurred, killing five men.  
  6. California wildfires are becoming more unpredictable, with increased deaths and destruction, and the outgoing Department of Forestry and Fire Protection Director, Ken Pimlott, says that being cautious about where new houses are built in California is the key to preventing more tragedies. Pimlott, who was with the agency for 30 years, says that rethinking where homes can be built, and avoiding high risk areas such as thickly forested mountain areas, or along Southern California's canyons that have tinder-dry chaparral, may be the key to protecting lives and property from wildfires that now routinely threaten large populations. Pimlott says that despite an increase in deadly and destructive wildfires, Los Angeles County Supervisors just approved a massive rural, 19,000 home community housing project in rugged mountains due to the housing shortage crisis--despite the increased fire danger.   
  7. A bomb threat at Facebook's Silicon Valley Campus prompted an evacuation of the facility late Tuesday afternoon. An anonymous tip was received by the New York Police Department regarding the Menlo Park, California facility, which was relayed immediately to local authorities. The San Mateo County bomb unit--along with explosive detection dogs--was dispatched, where an hours-long search did not reveal any packages or devices and an all-clear was then given for the facility.  
  8. A new deal signed for a hydro-electric power plant dam in Tanzania--on an Unesco World Heritage site--could threaten the livelihoods of farmers and fisherman downstream, and endanger thousands of wildlife species. The dam is slated to be built on the Rufiji River, in the Selous Game Reserve, which is also home to a rapidly declining rhino and elephant population. Tanzania government officials argue that the dam will allegedly double the nation's total power supply and boost development, critical steps in a country where only one-third of the population has access to electricity. 

Kimberly Arsenault Kimberly Arsenault serves as an intern at the Cleveland/Bradley County Emergency Management Agency where she works on plan revisions and special projects. Previously, Kimberly spent 15 years in commercial and business aviation. Her positions included station manager at the former Midwest Express Airlines, as well as corporate flight attendant, inflight manager, and charter flight coordinator. Kimberly currently holds a master's degree in emergency and disaster management from American Public University.