When wildfires ignite, they can spread very quickly. Preparedness now will help save lives and homes. It is important to know how to evacuate and what to bring with you. If wildland fires are threatening your area, listen to your radio or television for reports and evacuation information. Follow the directions of local authorities.
The Five Ps of Immediate Evacuation
• Pets — and livestock too
• Papers — Important documents
• Prescriptions — Medications, eyeglasses, hearing aids, etc.
• Pictures — Irreplaceable memories
• Personal Computer — Information on hard drives and discs
Preparing for the Fire Season
• Collect valuables, important documents, medications, and other personal items in one place and be ready to evacuate if necessary.
• What you can fit in your vehicle is what you can take. Make priorities by determining what is replaceable and what is not.
• Maintain a disaster supplies kit. This includes a first aid kit, emergency tools, a battery-powered radio and flashlight, extra batteries, car keys, credit cards, water and non-perishable food. Also, consider blankets and sleeping bags.
• Determine your need to have coverings for windows and skylights to increase fire resistance. Have these coverings readily accessible.
• Have a means of transporting pets and livestock readily available.
• Make sure the needs of children and any elderly or disabled family members are met.
• Clearly post your name and address, so it can be seen from the street.
• Establish and practice a family evacuation plan and meeting location. Determine whom you will notify about your evacuation. Determine where you get fire updates from reliable sources.
When a fire is nearby
• Park your vehicle facing out. Put your valuables in your car. Place the car keys where you can find them quickly.
• Dress appropriately. Wear sturdy shoes, long pants and a long-sleeved shirt, gloves and a bandana.
• Confine or secure your pets to one room or area. Prepare them to be transported.
• Move all flammable furniture (including outdoor furniture) to the center of your home.
• Keep your electricity on and leave some lights on.
• Close shutters, blinds, and heavy drapes. Remove lightweight drapes and curtains.
• Close fireplace dampers and fireplace screens.
• Shut all interior and exterior doors, and leave them unlocked.
• Place a note attached to the front door stating the names of evacuees, the time and date of your evacuation, your destination, and your contact information.
• Connect a garden hose to a faucet and leave buckets of water around your house.
• Place a ladder outside for roof access.