SOURCE: CH2M HILL

July 10, 2008 07:00 ET

CH2M HILL Chosen to Help Reduce Clean-Up, Protect Public Health and Safety After Disasters in Seattle Area

DENVER, CO--(Marketwire - July 10, 2008) - The Seattle Urban Area Security Initiative (UASI) region has selected CH2M HILL's Preparedness Solutions Group to develop Phase II of a debris management area-wide program. CH2M HILL's Preparedness Solutions Group, which is a part of the company's Enterprise Management Solutions (EMS) business unit, provides services to help private and public sector companies with emergency preparedness planning and disaster response and recovery. Debris management plans are necessary for protecting public health and safety and for reducing the financial burden of disaster clean-up efforts on states, local jurisdictions and tribes.

The Seattle UASI region is one of 60 UASI regions, established by the U.S. Department of Homeland Security, that are eligible to receive grants in support of emergency management and homeland security initiatives. Debris management is critical to ensuring that communities are prepared and equipped with the resources they need to clean up and process debris after a wind storm, earthquake, flood, terrorist attack or other major event.

Phase II of the Seattle UASI Disaster Debris Management Plan was initiated on February 26, 2008. For this phase, CH2M HILL EMS provides technical assistance in the development of tailored operational debris management plans for the Seattle UASI region, encompassing King, Pierce and Snohomish counties. Each jurisdiction's operational plan prioritizes areas for debris clearance and defines staff members' roles and responsibilities. At least 42 representatives from jurisdictions within the three-county Seattle UASI region have signed up to take advantage of the debris management planning process.

For Phase I of the debris management plan, completed on April 1, CH2M HILL EMS developed a regional "umbrella" plan that provides strategic guidance and identifies resources to help the region more quickly recover from disasters and return to normal operations.

The logistical requirements associated with debris clean-up after disastrous events are cumbersome. Floods that swept through Lewis County in December 2007 resulted in more than 123,000 cubic yards of debris, while the eruption of Mount St. Helens in 1980 dumped more than 67 million cubic yards of debris on rivers, highways and airports in Washington.

"In addition to impeding the health and safety of citizens, unmanaged debris places a great financial burden on the agencies and communities affected by the disaster. With a plan in place, public health and safety are better protected, and reimbursement and coordination of debris clean-up efforts go more smoothly," said Sandra Davis, strategic director of the Preparedness Solutions Group at CH2M HILL.

Headquartered in Denver, Colo., employee-owned CH2M HILL is a global leader in engineering, procurement, construction, management and operations for government, civil, industrial and energy clients. With more than $5 billion in revenue and 24,000 employees, CH2M HILL is an industry-leading program management, construction management and design firm, as ranked by Engineering News-Record (2007). The firm's work is concentrated in the areas of energy, water, transportation, environmental, nuclear and industrial facilities. The firm has long been recognized as a most-admired company and leading employer, including being named by FORTUNE as one of the 100 Best Companies to Work For and one of America's Most Admired Companies (2008). Visit www.ch2mhill.com.

CH2M HILL Enterprise Management Solutions (EMS) is an industry-leading management consulting and solution development business. EMS provides a unique ability to leverage its core lines of business -- consulting, enterprise spatial, enterprise collaboration, integrated security and emergency preparedness, program management and managed IT services -- to provide capabilities that span the entire client enterprise. The Preparedness Solutions Group specializes in assisting organizations with their emergency management and business continuity planning, training and employee preparedness, as well as with building communication between organizations for coordinated disaster response and recovery. For more information about CH2M HILL EMS visit: www.ch2m.com/ems.

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