Thursday, March 20, 2008

Lower Polk Neighborhood Association - Meeting Notes, March 4

The March 4th LPN meeting kicked off with a report from an SFPD officer, whom I can't name (not for his protection, mind you, but because I was late).

Police Report:

SFPD has been running undercover prostitution sting operations to catch both prostitutes and johns. These operations serve an additional purpose, training the many newer officers in undercover operations.

SFPD is ramping up DUI checkpoints to enforce drunk driving laws.

Vice ran 3 narcotics sting operations, including one at Polk and Eddy that resulted in arrests.

The neighborhood feedback about increased beat cop presence has been positive.

1219 Polk - Poeisis for Hair - New Merchant

Poesis for Hair opened on Polk between Bush and Sutter where Skates on Haight used to be. Neighbors are invited to stop in for a cup of coffee. Ask about the Polk Neighbors discount.

Fire Truck Siren Update

LPN has been in dialog with the Fire Chief regarding the use of air horns. David Chiu, LPN Chair, discussed the most recent letter from the Fire Chief which seemed to water down or disregard some of the agreements that were arrived at in the previous meeting.

Most notably, the letter states that the Chief is willing to analyze studies on the issue, rather than committing to producing the studies and omitted any mention of intersection pre-entry warning strobes.

Other neighbors added the following from their research -

The Chief cites regulations that require their horns in a code 3 emergency. However, the cited regulation only requires the use of air horns "if reasonably necessary". The horns may not be necessary for entering intersections on a green light, for instance.

Code 3 categorization may be overused. A 2004 report said that there were 2,000 calls at Station 3 from call boxes. 85%of these were false alarms. Of the remaining 15%, only a handful were related to fire, most were medical emergencies, and every vehicle that was sent was sent under a code 3.

Air horns operate at 120 decibels. Permanent hearing loss can occur at 7 seconds of exposure to this level. The loudest traffic noise is 85 decibels. There may be a lower level that would be appropriate for the equipment.

Cathedral Hill Hotel

CPMC (California Pacific Medical Center) purchased the Cathedral Hill Hotel with plans to build a hospital on the site.

The California Legislature has imposed a 2013 seismic safety deadline for hospitals to comply with seismic standards or cease inpatient care. CPMC has retrofitted its Davies campus, but did not feel they could upgrade the Pacific and California campuses and maintain services. The project representative who spoke at the meeting would not comment on whether St. Luke's has a seismic compliance issue or not.

With a February 22 filing at the planning department, the environmental evaluation kicked off. The evaluation will look at the impact on traffic, business, and health care in San Francisco, among other issues. The evaluation is expected to take two years to complete and then the plan begins the approval process.

Neighborhood Emergency Response Training (NERT)

In a city-wide emergency, it could be days before official response teams reach you. The NERT training started witha group in Los Angeles that responded to an earthquake in Mexico City. 85% of the people who were rescued, were rescued by freinds and neighbors. 50% of the helpers who were not trained became casualties themselves.

San Francisco is going to need a lot of citizens to pitch in after a major disaster. For instance, it is estimated that the financial district streets will be under several feet of glass in a major earthquake.

The training is implemented in two phases. First, individuals are trained in first aid, triage and personal preparedness. Once a critical mass of individuals are trained, then the next step is to coordinate teams.

LPNA is organizing a training.

David Chiu announces his candidacy for District 3 Supervisor

LPNA will greatly miss David's guidance when he leaves his position of Chair to run for city office.

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