LANCASTER — The City sent two building inspectors to Ridgecrest this week to assist with inspections following the 6.4 magnitude and 7.1 magnitude earthquakes on July 4 and 5, respectively, that occurred within a few short miles of the town.
“We were in contact with them asking if they needed help the entire time. Their inspectors finally wore out a little bit and they reached out,” said Andrew Noga, emergency services administrator for the City.
“The day of the earthquake myself, fire, and the sheriff were in contact, went out, checked crippled facilities and made sure everything was on our end in Lancaster,” Noga said at Tuesday’s City Council meeting.
Noga added they also looking at helping out with any supplies Ridgecrest might need.
“We’ve opened our doors and said, ‘Hey, let us know we’re here for you,’ ” Noga said.
City Manage Jason Caudle announced a drive for the community.
Mayor R. Rex Parris’ law firm donated two pallets of supplies of basic necessities including toilet paper and hygiene products to those affected by the earthquakes in Ridgecrest and Trona.
“Those have already headed out but we’re going to be reaching out to the community through Twitter, Instagram and other Facebook feeds to allow those materials to be dropped off here,” Caudle said.
The type of supplies needed include hand sanitizer, soap, baby wipes, diapers, and toilet paper, shampoo and conditioner, and toothpaste and toothbrushes.
Any businesses that want to participate can collect donations that will be collected by the City. Donations dropped off at City Hall will be delivered to those affected by the earthquakes.
“We’d love the community to come together and support those folks up there,” Caudle said.
Parris said there is a lot to be learned from what the communities affected by the earthquake are going through right now.
“A lot of people don’t have water. How many of us are going to be in that situation when the same thing happens here,” Parris said. “We know it’s going to happen here. It’s not if, it’s when it happens here.”
For example, Parris added the communities need portable toilets because of the lack of sewage.
“When you start thinking of all the things we take for granted that just aren’t going to be here for about six months when the San Andreas lets loose, we should start getting really serious about making certain we have water,” Parris said. “Make certain we have basic necessities that we can get by 30 days on our own because it’s probably going to be that long before they start paying attention to us rather than L.A.”
Ridgecrest never lost water but Trona did, Noga said after the meeting.
“It’s out of our county and so it’s harder to bring people up,” Noga said.
Noga likened Trona, which sits on the tip of San Bernardino County, to Lancaster, which sits on the northeastern tip of Los Angeles County.
The City of Palmdale also sent two inspectors.
“Immediately after the incident happened, Assistant City Manager J.J. Murphy reached out to their City Manager, and our Emergency Services Coordinator Nazy Chiniforoushan was also in contact with them in case they needed anything,” City spokesman John Mlynar said.
Mlynar added since the earthquakes happened the City has been reminding residents of the need to be prepared.