Chapter 8.20


Article I. Disasters

8.20.010    Purpose.

8.20.020    Definitions.

8.20.030    Declaration of a disaster emergency.

8.20.040    Emergency management and disaster agency director.

8.20.050    Powers and duties of the director.

8.20.060    Emergency power of the director.

8.20.070    Advisory council for emergency operations.

8.20.080    Incorporation of provisions of the Nevada Civil Defense Act of 1953.

8.20.090    Development of fallout shelters.

8.20.100    Violation—Penalty.

Article II. Blackouts

8.20.110    Applicability of provisions.

8.20.120    Definitions.

8.20.130    Illumination during blackout—Prohibited.

8.20.140    Illumination during blackout—Abatement.

8.20.150    Vehicle operator compliance required.

8.20.160    Notification of signals.

8.20.170    Sound-alike signals prohibited.

8.20.180    Sheriff to promulgate regulations.

8.20.190    Appointment of deputies.

8.20.200    Obedience to lawful orders.

8.20.210    Conflicting laws suspended.

8.20.220    Liability disclaimer.

8.20.230    Violation—Penalty.

Article I. Disasters

8.20.010 Purpose.

The purpose of this article is to provide for the safety and welfare of the people and the protection of their property within the county in a disaster situation through organized emergency operations; to provide for the coordination of such operations with appropriate public authorities, private persons, business associations and organizations, and to provide for the delegation of the disaster assistance responsibilities of the board of county commissioners to those county agencies having the resources for providing disaster assistance. (Ord. 5-20-71-B § 1)

8.20.020 Definitions.

As used in this article:

“Disaster” means a flood, fire of extraordinary proportion, earthquake, storm, epidemic, actual or threatened riot, serious domestic violence, insurrection, general war or other major calamity.

“Emergency operations” means the planning, preparation for and carrying out of all emergency functions necessary to prevent, minimize and recover from the effects of a disaster. (Ord. 5-20-71-B § 2)

8.20.030 Declaration of a disaster emergency.

The board shall proclaim the existence of a disaster emergency whenever in its judgment one is deemed to have occurred or is imminent. (Ord. 5-20-71-B § 3)

8.20.040 Emergency management and disaster agency director.

There is created the emergency management and disaster agency with a director as its executive head, hereinafter called the “director.” Such officer shall be appointed by the board of county commissioners. (Ord. 11-20-95; Ord. 5-20-71-B § 4)

8.20.050 Powers and duties of the director.

The director is empowered and directed:

A. To establish an organization for emergency operations utilizing for this purpose county, public and private resources;

B. With the approval of the board, to designate and prepare standing operating procedures for the emergency operations center from which centralized direction and control of the emergency operations organization may be exercised;

C. To exercise the emergency operations organization at drills, and to otherwise train and prepare the organization to effect the purpose of this article;

D. To represent the emergency operations organization of the county in all dealings with public or private agencies pertaining to emergency operations; excepting, that the sheriff will provide such representation in all matters dealing exclusively with law and order;

E. To direct county civil defense and emergency resources planning and preparedness activities;

F. To prepare an emergency operations plan and an emergency resources management plan for the county for adoption by the board of county commissioners, in support of and in consonance with federal and state emergency plans and guidance;

G. The director may employ technical, clerical, stenographic and other personnel as may be required, and may make such expenditures therefor and for other expenses of his office within the appropriation therefor, or from other funds made available to him for the purpose of emergency operations, as may be necessary to carry out the purpose of this article. (Ord. 11-20-95; Ord. 5-20-71-B § 5)

8.20.060 Emergency power of the director.

Upon proclamation by the board of a disaster emergency, the director is further empowered, under the direction of the board, to execute the emergency operations plan, and resources management plan if appropriate, and coordinate the overall effort of the emergency operations organization of this county for the accomplishment of the purpose of this article; excepting that in a disaster arising from civil disobedience, coordination of the emergency operations organization will be exercised by the sheriff, assisted by the director as required. (Ord. 5-20-71-B § 6)

8.20.070 Advisory council for emergency operations.

A. The board shall act as an advisory council for emergency operations and may appoint as members such additional persons as are deemed appropriate.

B. The council shall, as a specific function, provide technical and policy guidance to the director on civil defense and matters relating to community shelter planning, fallout shelter development and public relations and information. (Ord. 5-20-71-B § 7)

8.20.080 Incorporation of provisions of the Nevada Civil Defense Act of 1953.

Those provisions of NRS 414.110 (immunity and exemption) and 414.120 (limitation of private liability) as pertain to political subdivisions of the state, are adopted by and incorporated in this article. (Ord. 5-20-71-B § 8)

8.20.090 Development of fallout shelters.

A. Every officer, board, department, commission or commissions of the county charged with the duty of preparing specifications or awarding or entering into contracts for the design, erection or construction of buildings or other structures, including additions to existing structures for the county, shall incorporate or cause to be incorporated in such buildings or other structures, where little or no additional cost is involved, fallout protection for at least its normal anticipated population which shall meet or exceed the minimum space and fallout protection criteria recommended by the Office of Civil Defense, U.S. Department of Defense.

B. It shall be the policy of the county that fallout shelters be incorporated in all public buildings of the county to the fullest extent practicable, in order to provide protection against radiation for the greatest number of people in the event of nuclear attack.

C. The director shall establish contact with appropriate private industrial, marketing, architectural and engineering firms, business associations and planning organizations for the purpose of encouraging the incorporation of fallout shelters in privately owned buildings, structures, mines, etc., and, upon request, will make available to such firms and organizations, without charge, through the state Division of Emergency Management, a professional shelter analyst who will render advice as to the most practicable and economical method of applying shelter slanting techniques to the building or structural design under consideration. (Ord. 11-20-95; Ord. 5-20-71-B § 9)

8.20.100 Violation—Penalty.

It is a misdemeanor, punishable as provided in Chapter 1.08 HCC, for any person during a disaster emergency:

A. To willfully obstruct, hinder or delay any member of the emergency operations organization in the enforcement of any lawful rule or regulation imposed upon him by virtue of this article;

B. To do any act forbidden by any lawful rule or regulation issued pursuant to this article, if such act is of such a nature as to imperil the lives or property of inhabitants of the county, or to prevent, hinder or delay the protection thereof, or to give, or be likely to give assistance to the enemy;

C. To wear, carry or display, without authority, any means of identification specified by the state Division of Emergency Management or the county. (Ord. 11-20-95; Ord. 5-20-71-B § 10)

Article II. Blackouts

8.20.110 Applicability of provisions.

This article is to apply only to such portion of the county as is outside of incorporated cities and towns. (Ord. 1-5-42 § 13)

8.20.120 Definitions.

As used in this article:

“All-clear signal” means a continuous signal of two minutes duration at a steady pitch sounded on a siren, or if a siren is not available, then such other signal as may be available, published and designated for that purpose.

“Blackout signal” means a fluctuating or undulating signal of varying pitch for a period of two minutes duration sounded on a siren, or if a siren is not available, then such other signal as may be available, published and designated for that purpose.

“Blackout structure” means any area so enclosed that any illumination maintained or existing therein is not visible from any point outside the enclosure. (Ord. 1-5-42 § 1)

8.20.130 Illumination during blackout—Prohibited.

No person shall, at any time subsequent to a blackout signal and prior to the all-clear signal next thereafter, effect or maintain any illumination or permit any illumination under his control to be effected or maintained at any place within the county, except within a blackout structure. (Ord. 1-5-42 § 2)

8.20.140 Illumination during blackout—Abatement.

Any illumination contrary to the provisions of this article or to any order, rule or regulation adopted, published and promulgated in accordance with HCC 8.20.180, constitutes a public nuisance and the same may be summarily and effectively abated by any peace officer or fireman. Any such peace officer or fireman may enter any occupied structure at any time during such blackout and request the occupant thereof to abate any such nuisance forthwith by extinguishing or properly obscuring all such illumination; and, if such occupant fails, neglects or refuses to fully comply with such request forthwith, then in that event such peace officer or fireman shall immediately and summarily abate such nuisance by forthwith extinguishing or obscuring such illumination and by keeping the same so extinguished or obscured. (Ord. 1-5-42 § 3)

8.20.150 Vehicle operator compliance required.

Upon the sounding of any blackout signal all operators of automobiles, motor vehicles, bicycles or other vehicles carrying a light or lights shall immediately pull such vehicle over to the curb of the street or side of the road and park their vehicle at that point and immediately extinguish all lights, and such vehicle shall remain standing at that point until the all-clear signal provided for in this article is given; provided, however, that all motor and other vehicles operated by peace officers, firemen or blackout wardens, and necessary ambulances, may be operated with parking lights only, which lights shall be shielded and dimmed in the manner set forth in the rules and regulations provided for in HCC 8.20.170. (Ord. 1-5-42 § 4)

8.20.160 Notification of signals.

The sheriff or such other officer or person as may be designated by him is authorized and directed to notify the office of the chief of police of any incorporated city or town in the county at once, and forthwith to cause the sounding of a blackout signal and of an all-clear signal whenever he deems it necessary or advisable either in the case of a real or threatened air raid or for a practice blackout; and the same shall always be immediately, effectively and fully complied with as provided for in this article, no matter whether for a real blackout or a practice blackout. (Ord. 1-5-42 § 5)

8.20.170 Sound-alike signals prohibited.

No person shall operate a siren or other audible device in such a manner that it cannot be easily distinguished from a blackout or an all-clear signal. (Ord. 1-5-42 § 6)

8.20.180 Sheriff to promulgate regulations.

The sheriff is authorized and directed to promulgate, publish and enforce such orders, rules and regulations, approved by the board of county commissioners and not inconsistent with the provisions of this article, outside the incorporated cities and towns, as may be necessary, to maintain adequate blackouts and other air raid protection measures, and to protect people and property within the county, during real and practice blackouts. Such orders, rules and regulations may also supplement this article to the extent necessary to properly and adequately extinguish and obscure lights, regulate the movement of emergency and other vehicles within the county, prevent the congregation of persons on the streets or in public places or buildings within the county, notwithstanding any ordinance or provision of law to the contrary, and provide such other measures as may be necessary or proper in order to accomplish the above mentioned purposes. Such orders, rules and regulations so approved by the board of county commissioners shall have the force and effect of law and a violation of any such orders, rules and regulations shall subject the violator thereof to the penalty provisions of this article. (Ord. 1-5-42 § 7)

8.20.190 Appointment of deputies.

The sheriff may appoint for a specified time as many special deputies without pay, as may be deemed advisable for service in connection with any blackout or other air raid protection measures. During the term of appointment of special deputies and while acting as such during the period of any blackout or air raid alarm or in the performance of their duties incident thereto, they shall possess all the powers and privileges and perform all the duties of special deputy sheriffs. The special deputies shall wear such identifying emblem as may be prescribed by the sheriff and each must carry an identification card. (Ord. 1-5-42 § 8)

8.20.200 Obedience to lawful orders.

It is unlawful to disobey any lawful direction or order of the peace officer or fireman given during a period of blackout or air raid alarm, in the performance of his duties incident thereto, which order is reasonably necessary to the maintenance of public order or safety or to effect the extinguishment of light. (Ord. 1-5-42 § 9)

8.20.210 Conflicting laws suspended.

The provisions of every ordinance or law requiring any illumination to be maintained in conflict with this article shall be deemed suspended during the period between any blackout signal and the all-clear signal next thereafter. (Ord. 1-5-42 § 10)

8.20.220 Liability disclaimer.

This article is enacted pursuant to law and more particularly pursuant to the authority granted by Nevada Compiled Laws, 1929, Section 1231, subparagraph 14, and is an exercise by the county of its governmental function for the protection of the public peace, health and safety, and neither the county nor any individual engaged in the enforcing, or subject to regulations lawfully included in this article or promulgated pursuant to the authority conferred, shall be liable for any damage sustained to person or property on account of any duly authorized blackouts or air raid alarm, or resulting from any lawful and reasonable exercise of any of the powers given or performance of any of the duties designated by this article. (Ord. 1-5-42 § 12)

8.20.230 Violation—Penalty.

Any person, firm, association or corporation who or which is found guilty of a violation of any of the provisions of this article shall be punished as provided in Chapter 1.08 HCC. (Ord. 1-5-42 § 11)