Orange County Residents Urged to Prepare for Disaster After Magazine Names Area Second-Dangerous in United States

Orange County residents were urged to prepare for emergencies and disasters less than a week after Time magazine ranked the county as the second-most dangerous area in the United States when it comes to natural disasters.

September kicks off National Emergency Preparedness Month, and the Orange County Sheriff’s Department was calling on residents to be prepared since authorities wouldn’t be able to respond quickly to every emergency call.

“Getting to every person quickly following an emergency will simply not be possible -- especially if trees and power lines are down,” Lt. Jeff Hallock said in a statement. “The more people who are prepared for a disaster, the quicker the community will recover afterwards.”

The statement comes only a few days after Time magazine released “The Answers Issue,” which ranked more than 3,000 counties on safety from a natural disaster. Orange County was ranked No. 2 on the “Most Dangerous Counties” list.

Hallock said Monday that he was in the process of contacting the editor of the Time piece to discuss what he felt was "inaccurate methodology" used in the report's findings.

"I just think we have a responsibility to the people of Orange" to not give them a false sense of how dangerous the county is, Hallock said.

Time explains on their website how they came up with the ranking, using the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration as their source of information.

“We tallied up every event in the contiguous United States that has caused death, property damage, injuries or crop damage in each county. Then we created a metric, called the disaster index, that is based on the average of each county’s events plus the events of its neighboring counties.

“For example, California’s Orange County’s disaster index is the sum of its events (120) and all its neighbors events (754) divided by the count of neighboring counties plus one (5). This gives Orange County a safety index of 174.8,” according to the website.

Back in Orange County, residents were told to follow simple steps to be prepared in the event of a disaster, including making a kit and making an emergency plan.

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