During the winter of `97/`98, from February 2nd through February 9th, a series of storms pelted Ames Moffett Field leaving considerable damage in their wake. At least eight of the Ames' basements were significantly flooded and at least twice that many of the Moffett Field buildings. Damage was not limited to basements. Ames Moffett Field also had damage that resulted from roof leaks and first floor flooding. Over 100 underground vaults were flooded. The flooding resulted in a loss of power to much of Moffett Field. The flooding also caused considerable damage to our levees and storm channels. The winter storms also brought high winds. The high wind caused damage to many roofs, trees, and buildings. While the damage was significant, it would have been far worse if not for the efforts of DART and the other emergency responders.
The EOC was activated on February 2nd. Under the Incident Command System, the Director of the EOC requested support from the military organizations based at Moffett Field. As a result of the high water level, considerable sand bagging operations were required. Sand bagging operations included personnel from the Naval Air Reserve, the California Air National Guard, and the Air Force working shoulder-to-shoulder with DART, Plant Engineering, Moffett Fire and Ames volunteers. As part of the response, over 15,000 sand bags were used. At the height of the storm, the pumping stations were pumping almost three million gallons per hour; normal maximum capacity is 1.2 million gallons per hour. This did not include the 2.75 million gallons per hour that was pumped from the Lockheed channel. All of Moffett's storm-drain system and a significant portion of the Ames' system flows to the Moffett channel. If the levees were lost considerably more damage would have resulted at Ames, Moffett and Lockheed.
The levees were a major concern but they were not the only concern. The EOC had teams of facility personnel working through the second night attempting to plug basement penetrations. From Monday night, February 2nd, until Monday morning February 9th, facility personnel worked around the clock. At one point in the response efforts, there were over 400 people involved.
During the brunt of the storm, the EOC had to deal with a least five different and significant response activities; shoring up the levees, increasing the pumping capacity in the Moffett channel as well as the Lockheed channel, returning power to Moffett, cleaning up the water in the basements, cleaning up a PCB spill and a gas spill, and mitigating the cause of water in the basements.
The response teams included DART Rescue, DART HazMat, DART Communications, DART Damage and Utility Control, Plant Engineering, Moffett Fire, Protective Services, DART Logistics, and the Ames and military volunteers. The support elements included procurement, medical, communications, EOC support, Protective Services, engineering, Flight Operations, and the Ames Exchange Council. Coordination was also required between Ames and its military partners, Lockheed, FEMA 9, the County EOC, the State, and the American Red Cross.
Click on an image to see an enlarged view.