ARCADIA, Calif. (Dec. 2, 2011)—In response to unprecedented wind-related damage and power outages in the San Gabriel Valley, Southern California Edison has constructed an Emergency Operations Center in Santa Anita’s south parking lot consisting of emergency vehicles, equipment, RVs, tents and 44 emergency relief crews.

Santa Anita’s home city of Arcadia and surrounding communities were hit hard by hurricane-force winds late Wednesday night and early Thursday morning and large areas, including Santa Anita, were without power most of Thursday.

“This is basically a mobile command center,” said Marvin Jackson, Regional Manager, Public Affairs, Southern California Edison. “Ordinarily, our crews would be able to operate out of a local service center, but in this situation, with so much damage, it’s nice to be centrally located near some of the most heavily damaged areas.”

Jackson noted that due to the vast amount of fallen trees and other debris, many homes and businesses remain without power.

“Right now, we have no idea how long it’s going to take to get power fully restored. In so many cases, the power lines are on top of and entangled with downed debris and that’s really making things difficult. The fact that we’re able to base here at Santa Anita, in one location, is very helpful in terms of logistics,” he added.

Santa Anita, which is located just east of Pasadena, in Arcadia, is regarded as one of the region’s most important assets in the event of any serious natural disaster.

“Our neighbors were hit hard and we want to help everyone get life back to normal as soon as possible,” said Santa Anita President George Haines. “We’re fortunate to have our power back on and we know how important it is to facilitate Edison’s efforts in our community. We’re glad to be in a position to assist them.”

Although Santa Anita was closed for simulcast wagering on Thursday, the facility was reopened for simulcasting on Friday and will remain open through the weekend.

Santa Anita’s 75th winter/spring meeting will open on Dec. 26, with first post time at 12 noon. For more information on the upcoming meeting, go to, or call (626) 574-RACE.