SAN DIEGO – Barely two months after the wine country fires charred Northern California, the state is once again staring down a spate of wildfires, this time in Southern California.
If you are forced to evacuate, do you know what to do?
FEMA says if you have to evacuate quickly, remember the 6 ‘P’s’:
1. People and Pets
People and, if safely possible, pets and other animals/livestock
Prescriptions, with dosages; medicines; medical equipment; batteries or power cords; eyeglasses; and hearing aids
Papers, including important documents (hard copies and/or electronic copies saved on external hard drives or portable thumb drives)
4. Personal Needs
Personal needs—such as clothes, food, water, first aid kit, phones, and chargers
5. Priceless items
Priceless items, including pictures, irreplaceable mementos, and other valuables
Credit cards, ATM cards and cash
The Red Cross of San Diego suggests residents print their Wildfire Safety Checklist.
-If you think you may need to evacuate, confine all pets to one room so you can quickly and easily take them and go
-Back your car into the driveway for a safer and more efficient way out
-Always keep at least half a tank of gas in your car
-Consider putting together a “digital disaster kit”- put all your important documents onto a thumb drive, which you can quickly grab and take with you if you have to evacuate quickly
Continuing Coverage: California Wildfires
CalFire also has tips to prepare yourself and your home for the possibility of having to evacuate.
Put together your emergency supply kit long before a wildfire or other disaster occurs and keep it easily accessible so you can take it with you when you have to evacuate.
Plan to be away from your home for an extended period of time. Each person should have a readily accessible emergency supply kit. Backpacks work great for storing these items (except food and water) and are quick to grab. Storing food and water in a tub or chest on wheels will make it easier to transport. Keep it light enough to be able to lift it into your car.
Emergency supply kit checklist:
-Three-day supply of non-perishable food and three gallons of water per person.
-Map marked with at least two evacuation routes
-Prescriptions or special medications
-Change of clothing
-Extra eyeglasses or contact lenses
-An extra set of car keys, credit cards, cash or traveler’s checks
-First aid kit
-Battery-powered radio and extra batteries
-Copies of important documents (birth certificates, passports, etc.)
-Don’t forget pet food and water!
Items to take if time allows:
-Easily carried valuables
-Family photos and other irreplaceable items
-Personal computer information on hard drives and disks
-Chargers for cell phones, laptops, etc.
-Always keep a sturdy pair of shoes and a flashlight near your bed and handy in case of a sudden evacuation at night.