Northwest News

Orting schools conducting lahar drill Thursday

The Orting School District will conduct its annual lahar evacuation drill starting at 9:15 a.m. Thursday (May 21).

The district will partner with the Orting Police Department, Orting Fire and Rescue, and the City of Orting for the drill to prepare students for a possible catastrophic mudflow from Mount Rainier. School staff have been trained and have assignments for the drill, and first responders and district staff are blocking streets to ensure safe student crossings.

Orting Primary School students, along with kindergarteners and first graders from Ptarmigan Ridge Elementary School, will practice on a shortened evacuation route. Teachers will tell students where to continue walking in case of an actual lahar, then students will walk back to their schools.

Older Ptarmigan Ridge students will walk to the rock quarry, then back to the Soldiers Home where buses will pick them up and drive them back to school. Orting Middle School and Orting High School students will walk to the rock quarry, then back to their schools.

If you have a student participating in the drill, you can help by ensuring your student dresses appropriately and eats a home or school breakfast. Your student may also bring a water bottle for the walk.

Parents with questions may contact their student’s school directly. Community members with questions may contact the superintendent’s office at 360-893-6500.