MITIGATING a catastrophic fire or historic flooding is the focus of work by emergency responders in the six counties of the San Luis Valley. A working group of the San Luis Valley Emergency Response team released a public video this week outlining their work in updating the Valley’s hazard mitigation strategy.

“The purpose of this plan is pre-disaster,” explained project manager Jeff Brislawn in the 58-minute YouTube video. “It’s not what the communities do when a disaster occurs, it’s what we can do now in a peacetime environment to hopefully reduce and minimize the impact of those hazards when it does happen.”

Similar groups nationally have been updating hazard mitigation strategies in response to historic drought conditions and ongoing threats to power grids and other potential catastrophic events tied to changing the climate.

Chief among the concerns for San Luis Valley emergency responders and local elected officials is the lack of redundant power and a threat the Valley could get cut off from critical supplies during a natural disaster. Alamosa County officials are beginning to work on presenting the Valley’s case for the need for redundant power transmission development before the Colorado Public Utilities Commission.

The video captures a recent public meeting held by emergency responders outlining proposed updates to the San Luis Valley Hazard Mitigation Plan.

“The intent of this meeting is for the general public to understand more about the draft plan that is soon to be rolled out for public review,” said Brislawn.

The video can be viewed here.