Verizon Wireless Sponsors Orange County Red Cross Disaster Preparedness Academy

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June 5, 2000-ORANGE COUNTY, Calif., -

Verizon Wireless has donated $2,500 to the Orange County Disaster Preparedness Academy (OCDPA). The funds were used to support the 16th annual Academy, which was presented by the Orange County Red Cross at California State University Fullerton last week.

The Academy offers tailor-made workshops that address the challenges that local residents, schools and area businesses face in planning for disasters. Open to Southern California residents, this year's Academy included 19 workshops on emergency preparedness, mitigation, response and recovery.

“We recognize the importance of disaster preparedness in the communities we serve,” said Brian Shay, executive vice president and general manager of Verizon Wireless. “Verizon Wireless is proud to support the Academy workshops, which will train hundreds of area residents how to respond in times of crisis.”

In response to the continued interest about curtailing violent outbreaks in schools, a six-hour “Crisis Response Team Training” gave school building teams a basic crisis response plan. Participants reviewed building evacuation plans, developed or reviewed a lock-down plan, and discussed the best way to communicate bad news. Other workshops of interest to area schools included “Effective School Disaster Drill,” and “Light Urban Search and Rescue for Schools.”

“Disaster Planning from A to Z” provided the basics for building a corporate disaster plan from the ground up and “How to Have an Award-Winning Disaster Plan at Your Worksite” shared innovative ideas that have worked at local companies. “Workplace Violence Prevention” addressed a critical risk in the work environment today and provides practical steps to avoid disaster.

The OCDPA was presented in partnership with the Orange County Emergency Management Organization, the Orange County Disaster Recovery Alliance, the Orange County Association of Contingency Planners, and numerous volunteers.


About Verizon Wireless

Verizon Wireless is the largest wireless communications provider in the U.S. with more than 18 million wireless voice and data customers and nearly 4 million paging customers. The new coast-to-coast wireless company was formed by the combination of the U.S. wireless businesses of Bell Atlantic Corp. (NYSE:BEL) and Vodafone AirTouch Plc (LSE:VOD; NYSE:VOD). The new company includes the assets of Bell Atlantic Mobile, AirTouch Cellular, PrimeCo Personal Communications and AirTouch Paging. Verizon Wireless will be further strengthened by the addition of the wireless assets of GTE Corp. (NYSE:GTE) when it completes its merger with Bell Atlantic. The new company will have a footprint covering nearly 90 percent of the U.S. population, 49 of the top 50 and 96 of the top 100 U.S. markets. Headquartered in New York City and Bedminster, NJ, Verizon Wireless is 30,000 employees strong. Reporters and editors can find more Verizon Wireless information at

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