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Calif. county unprepared for disaster

Bob Cuddy, Sarah Linn and Leslie Griffy of The Tribune reviewed San Luis Obispo County's disaster documents to show that the county was vulnerable in case of a major disaster. "While the county, home to Diablo Canyon nuclear power plant, gets high marks for its planning, Hurricane Katrina showed that plans are one thing, implementing them is another. A major emergency could strand thousands of the county's most vulnerable and severely tax the government's ability to spread information." In a four-part series on disaster management in the county, the investigation also looked at the safety of people in nursing homes, those with special needs and pet safety. According to the paper, in the case of nursing homes, essential precautions such as stockpiling supplies, planning evacuations and setting up communications are left largely under-regulated in a system that splits oversight between state and local officials and gives neither the authority needed to ensure safety of the residents.

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