More and more people are making their homes in woodland settings - in or near forests, rural areas, or remote mountain sites. There, homeowners enjoy the beauty of the environment but face the very real danger of wildfire.
Wildfires often begin unnoticed. These fires are usually triggered by lightning or accidents. They spread quickly, igniting brush, trees, and homes. Reduce your risk by preparing now - before wildfire strikes. Meet with your family to decide what to do and where to go if wildfires threaten your area.
Build an emergency kit and make a family communications plan.
Familiarize yourself with the various ways you may be notified of a wildfire emergency, including local emergency notification systems, outdoor sirens, and local media.
Be prepared to evacuate at a moment’s notice. Prepare an emergency kit to take with you and include important documents. Be familiar with multiple evacuation routes out of your community.
If advised to evacuate, do so immediately. Take your disaster supply kit, lock your home and choose a route away from the fire hazard. Watch for changes in the speed and direction of the fire and smoke. Tell someone when you left and where you are going.
If you see a wildfire and haven't received evacuation orders yet, call 9-1-1. Don't assume that someone else has already called. Describe the location of the fire, speak slowly and clearly, and answer any questions asked by the dispatcher. Don’t hesitate to leave your home and evacuate to a safer area if you feel your life is in danger.
If you want more information about any of these topics, the following resources may be helpful.