SCE Responds to Increased Terrorist Threat Assessment

March 18, 2003

March 18, 2003

The Department of Homeland Security yesterday announced an increased risk of terrorist attack or Security Advisory Level Orange indicating terrorists might attempt attacks against U.S. targets worldwide in the event of a U.S led military campaign against Saddam Hussein.  In response, Southern California Edison (SCE) released the following statement.

ROSEMEAD, Calif., March 18, 2003 - The security guidelines associated with the orange or High threat condition declared yesterday by the Homeland Security Department are routine at SCE facilities, including ensuring that facilities are locked, maintaining liaison with law enforcement officials, screening personnel and vehicles entering facilities, and asking employees to report suspicious activities.

These security procedures are in effect at all of its company facilities and energy systems -- power plants, substations, and other parts of the electricity infrastructure, including the San Onofre Nuclear Generating Station in north San Diego County which has remained at the highest level of security since 9/11.

SCE maintains close contact with government, military, and law enforcement officials regarding potential security threats that might endanger its facilities, employees, and customers, including participation in regular briefings and teleconferences within the nation's electricity generation and transmission sector.  There is no intelligence at this time that SCE facilities are threatened.

If a military engagement should begin in the Persian Gulf and the Homeland Security Department declares a Severe Condition (red), SCE will take appropriate actions as recommended by state and federal authorities.

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An Edison International company, Southern California Edison is one of the nation's largest electric utilities, serving a population of more than 12 million via 4.5 million customer accounts in a 50,000-square-mile service area within central, coastal and Southern California. For more information on the California electricity market, see www.sce.com.
 
Homeland Security Advisory System
Source:  http://www.whitehouse.gov/homeland

Low Condition (Green). This condition is declared when there is a low risk of terrorist attacks. Federal departments and agencies should consider the following general measures in addition to the agency-specific Protective Measures they develop and implement:

  • Refining and exercising as appropriate preplanned Protective Measures;
  • Ensuring personnel receive proper training on the Homeland Security Advisory System and specific preplanned department or agency Protective Measures; and
  • Institutionalizing a process to assure that all facilities and regulated sectors are regularly assessed for vulnerabilities to terrorist attacks, and all reasonable measures are taken to mitigate these vulnerabilities.

Guarded Condition (Blue). This condition is declared when there is a general risk of terrorist attacks. In addition to the Protective Measures taken in the previous Threat Condition, Federal departments and agencies should consider the following general measures in addition to the agency-specific Protective Measures that they will develop and implement:

  • Checking communications with designated emergency response or command locations;
  • Reviewing and updating emergency response procedures; and 
  • Providing the public with any information that would strengthen its ability to act appropriately.

Elevated Condition (Yellow). An Elevated Condition is declared when there is a significant risk of terrorist attacks. In addition to the Protective Measures taken in the previous Threat Conditions, Federal departments and agencies should consider the following general measures in addition to the Protective Measures that they will develop and implement: 

  • Increasing surveillance of critical locations; 
  • Coordinating emergency plans as appropriate with nearby jurisdictions; 
  • Assessing whether the precise characteristics of the threat require the further refinement of preplanned Protective Measures; and 
  • Implementing, as appropriate, contingency and emergency response plans.

High Condition (Orange). A High Condition is declared when there is a high risk of terrorist attacks. In addition to the Protective Measures taken in the previous Threat Conditions, Federal departments and agencies should consider the following general measures in addition to the agency-specific Protective Measures that they will develop and implement:

  • Coordinating necessary security efforts with Federal, State, and local law enforcement agencies or any National Guard or other appropriate armed forces organizations;
  • Taking additional precautions at public events and possibly considering alternative venues or even cancellation;
  • Preparing to execute contingency procedures, such as moving to an alternate site or dispersing their workforce; and
  • Restricting threatened facility access to essential personnel only.

Severe Condition (Red). A Severe Condition reflects a severe risk of terrorist attacks. Under most circumstances, the Protective Measures for a Severe Condition are not intended to be sustained for substantial periods of time. In addition to the Protective Measures in the previous Threat Conditions, Federal departments and agencies also should consider the following general measures in addition to the agency-specific Protective Measures that they will develop and implement:

  • Increasing or redirecting personnel to address critical emergency needs;
  • Assigning emergency response personnel and pre-positioning and mobilizing specially trained teams or resources;
  • Monitoring, redirecting, or constraining transportation systems; and
  • Closing public and government facilities.