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Wildfire Preparedness Week, Day 6: Go! Create an Evacuation Plan

Wildfire Preparedness Week, Day 6: Go!  Create an Evacuation Plan

Wildfire Preparedness Week is May 1-7, 2017.  Follow our daily updates for an easy, step by step guide to protecting your home!

This week, FIRESafe MARIN will provide a simple, 7 day guide to improving your home and family's wildfire preparedness with simple, easy, inexpensive tips.

Day 6: Go!  Create an Evacuation Plan

 Ready, Set, Go.  If you've followed days 1-5 of our Wildfire Preparedness Week step-by-step planning guide, you've now taken steps to "Ready" your home for wildfire, and are "set" to evacuate when the time is right.  Today we'll look at the last step in a process that we hope you'll never face - evacuate.

Evacuations save lives and allow responding personnel to focus on the emergency at hand. Please evacuate promptly when requested!  Your life is at stake!

By leaving early, you give your family the best chance of surviving a wildfire. You also help firefighters by keeping roads clear of congestion, enabling them to move more freely and do their job.

Ready Set go Logo

EVACUATE EARLY AND SAFELY. FOLLOW YOUR PERSONAL WILDLAND FIRE ACTION PLAN. DOING SO WILL NOT ONLY SUPPORT YOUR SAFETY BUT WILL ALLOW FIREFIGHTERS TO BEST MANEUVER RESOURCES TO COMBAT THE FIRE.


Give your household the best chance of surviving a wildfire by being ready to go and evacuating early. This includes going through pre-evacuation preparation steps (only if time allows) to increase your home’s defenses, as well as creating a Wildfire Action Plan for your family.  Being ready to go also means knowing when to evacuate and what to do if you become trapped.

TAKE ACTION IMMEDIATELY WHEN WILDFIRE STRIKES

Remember: When immediate evacuation is necessary, follow these steps as soon as possible to get ready to GO!

  1. Review your Evacuation Plan Checklist.
  2. Ensure your Emergency Supply Kit is in your vehicle.
  3. Cover-up to protect against heat and flying embers. Wear long pants, long sleeve shirt, heavy shoes/boots, cap, dry bandanna for face cover, goggles or glasses. 100% cotton is preferable.
  4. Locate your pets, place them in crates, gather pet food and supplies,  and prepare to take them with you.
  5. Review the IBHS Last Minute Evacuation Checklist if you have time (before evacuation is ordered or advised).

LEARN MORE ABOUT WILDFIRE EVACUATION IN MARIN.

WHEN TO EVACUATE

Leave as soon as evacuation is recommended by fire officials to avoid being caught in fire, smoke or road congestion. Don’t wait to be ordered by authorities to leave. Evacuating early also helps firefighters keep roads clear of congestion, and lets them move more freely to do their job. In an intense wildfire, they may not have time to knock on every door. If you are advised to leave, don’t hesitate!

  • Officials will determine the areas to be evacuated and escape routes to use depending upon the fire’s location, behavior, winds, terrain, etc.
  • Law enforcement agencies are typically responsible for enforcing an evacuation order. Follow their directions promptly.
  • You will be advised of potential evacuations as early as possible. You must take the initiative to stay informed and aware. Listen to your radio/TV for announcements from law enforcement and emergency personnel.
  • You may be directed to temporary assembly areas to await transfer to a safe location.

The terms “Voluntary” and “Mandatory” are often used to describe evacuation orders, however, some local jurisdictions may use other terminology such as “Precautionary” and “Immediate Threat.”  These terms are used to alert you to the significance of the danger.

All evacuation instructions provided by officials should be followed immediately for your safety.

WHAT TO DO IF YOU BECOME TRAPPED

WHILE IN YOUR VEHICLE:

  • Stay calm.
  • Park your vehicle in an area clear of vegetation.
  • Close all vehicle windows and vents.
  • Cover yourself with a wool or cotton blanket or jacket.
  • Lie on vehicle floor.
  • Use your cell phone to advise officials—Call 911. 

WHILE ON FOOT:

  • Stay calm.
  • Go to an area clear of vegetation, a ditch or depression on level ground if possible.
  • Lie face down and cover up your body.
  • Use your cell phone to advise officials—Call 911. 

WHILE IN YOUR HOME: 

  • Stay calm and keep your family together.
  • Call 911 and inform authorities of your location. 
  • Fill sinks and tubs with cold water.
  • Keep doors and windows closed, but unlocked. 
  • Stay inside your house.
  • Stay away from outside walls and windows.

Learn more at www.readysetgomarin.org, and watch tomorrow for the final, Day 7, of our Wildfire Preparedness Week series.  Download a pdfReady, Set, Go "Action Guide" for more information and checklists.

WILDFIRE PREPAREDNESS WEEK: A FIRE SAFE HOME IN 7 DAYS

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