Barry Anderson, PG&E’s vice president of Electric Distribution, has been appointed to the California Earthquake Early Warning Advisory Board.
The board was created in 2016 and is part of an effort to develop a comprehensive statewide earthquake early warning system in California through a public-private partnership.
Earthquake early warning systems use science and monitoring systems to create an alert when shaking waves generated by an earthquake are expected to arrive at a specific location. The seconds to minutes of advance warning can provide an opportunity to take actions to protect life and property from destructive shaking.
Anderson was appointed by Gov. Jerry Brown. The board also includes the director of the Governor’s Office of Emergency Services (Cal OES) and California’s secretaries of Transportation, Health and Human Services, and Business, Consumer Services and House, among others.
“At PG&E, we know the importance of preparing for natural disasters and emergencies as well as utilizing innovative technology. Earthquake early warning systems are at the cutting edge of the intersection of these two priorities. I am honored to join this board,” Anderson said.
PG&E is taking steps to integrate the technology into its emergency management and preparedness efforts.
PG&E is working with both private and publicly funded technology developers and integrators, including Early Warning Labs, Seismic Warning Systems, and the ShakeAlert project, which is a coalition that includes the U.S. Geological Survey, the State of California and universities including the Berkeley Seismological Laboratory at the University of California, Berkeley, the University of Washington, and the University of Oregon.
These research collaborations allow PG&E to actively pilot multiple earthquake early warning system (or EEW) solutions to test which ones will allow both automated and human actions in the seconds before an earthquake to protect lives, lessen property damage and ensure rapid service restoration.
PG&E is among the first energy companies in California and the United States to begin implementing this early warning technology as a part of its seismic response efforts.
Anderson joined PG&E in 2011 and served as senior director of Distribution System Operations and vice president of Emergency Preparedness and Response before assuming his current position in 2016. He held several positions at Florida Power and Light from 1983 to 2011.
He is a member of the California Homeland Security Advisory Committee and serves on the board of directors of the Bay Area Chapter of the American Red Cross.
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