Mistretta: “… doing their due diligence …”
CENTRAL VALLEY – Woodbury Common Premium Outlets, which attracts shoppers from around the globe, has been recognized by the National Weather Service as “Storm Ready” and “Weather-Ready Nation Ambassadors.”
Woodbury Common began training and preparation for early this year and have since met all the requirements to be considered “Storm Ready” – establishing a 24-hour warning point and emergency operations center; having multiple avenues for storm warnings, detection, and communication to the public; possessing a system for monitoring local weather conditions; promoting public weather readiness through seminars; and creating a formal hazardous weather plan, including emergency exercises as well as trained weather spotters.
Outlet center General Manager David Mistretta said every one of their malls, nationwide, has this designation and their intention in pursuing it for their Orange County location was the same – keeping their shoppers safe.
“We are recognized as an entity that is doing their due diligence in making sure that we’re preparing, and recognizing, and making sure that our shoppers are safe on the property,” said Mistretta. “It’s really focused on making sure that, when people visit our property, we’re a safe environment.”
Orange County Emergency Services Commissioner Brendan Casey said as an entire county, Orange is deemed “Storm Ready.” The county 911 center will be directly involved as part of the Woodbury Common’s plan, and Casey said, given their volume of visitors, it was a good idea for them to see this through.
“They have a lot of people on site at any given point, so it’s a good thing for them to do it, and it just reaffirms to the feds and the county, that you have a plan in place, that you’re aware that severe weather happens and you have a way of detecting that, communicating with the National Weather Service, and it just ensures that they have a good plan in place,” said Casey.
County Executive Steve Neuhaus said not only is this an example of the private sector and the county partnering to combat storms that seem to be getting worse as time goes on, but, with the county’s financial review coming up, this may also encourage investors, and boost the county’s bond rating, by being an added benefit to an already impressive county location.