Children with fireman in front of a fire truck cheering

There’s no perfect time for a disaster but there is a perfect opportunity to prepare.

The County of San Mateo is hosting its 14th annual Disaster Preparedness Day from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. on Sept. 22, 2018, at the County Event Center in San Mateo. The free event will give attendees opportunities to learn more about real-life disasters from experts like NBC meteorologist Kari Hall with the StormRanger mobile radar system, and Sonoma County Supervisor Shirlee Zane and staff who recently saw their community ambushed by wildfires. Attendees can also learn how to build a go kit, navigate a “smoke” filled tunnel simulating a house fire and visit resources tables. The annual showcase is a chance for individuals and families to begin or refresh their planning in useful and entertaining ways.

“The wildfires in our neighboring counties to the north, not to mention our Bay Area location, are reminders to everyone in San Mateo County that disasters and emergencies aren’t events that happen in far away places. They happen here, too, which is why I’m  proud the County and our partners are coming together to help us be resilient,” said District Two Supervisor Carole Groom who is leading the event this year.

This year’s theme is “Prepare, Survive and Recover” which is reflected in the day’s line up of attractions and classes. They include:

  • Earthquake shake house
  • The smoky hall
  • Bomb squad robots
  • Search and rescue dog demonstrations
  • Emergency response career tables
  • Resource tables for local Community Emergency Response Teams (CERT) & vendors
  • Classes: CPR, general first aid and Automated External Defibrillator (AED)

And did we mention free hot dogs and giveaways?

“Emergencies are serious business but we also want everybody to have a little fun,” Groom said.

Admission is free as is parking at the Franklin Templeton parking lot off Franklin Parkway at Saratoga Drive and the west parking lot of the Event Center which has an entrance on Delaware. Parking is also available for $12 in the Event Center east lot on Saratoga Avenue. The event center is walkable from both the Hayward Park and Hillsdale Caltrain stations (approximately one mile distance).

The San Mateo County Event Center is at 1346 Saratoga Ave., San Mateo.

For more information, visit or call the Office of Supervisor Carole Groom at (650) 363-4568.