Tahoe chief’s corner: An evacuation plan is very important | SierraSun.com

Tahoe chief’s corner: An evacuation plan is very important

Mike Brown
Special to the Bonanza
Mike Brown

Over the last several weeks, we’ve been discussing Emergency Preparedness and the steps involved with Making a Plan, Assembling a Kit and Staying Informed.

The last component is evacuation. A key component of the “Fire Adapted Communities” concept is residents who know how to safely and effectively evacuate. Successful community evacuation requires preparation.

The following checklists provide recommendations concerning proper evacuation. Key points to consider are elements of emergency planning and preparation, and notification:

Preparation

Local Utility Company Information.

To-go Bag & Disaster Supplies Kit (as discussed in previous columns).

Essentials for a Disaster Supplies Kit.

Preparing Pets.

Addressing Special Needs Populations.

Notification

Local government public information officers can prepare and distribute media releases for broadcast by local media outlets.

Emergency managers can initiate the Emergency Alert System, which interrupts local radio and television broadcasts with important information.

Public safety officials can directly broadcast messages over government cable channels.

Fires responders and credentialed volunteers can go door-to-door to alert citizens.

If applicable, the local emergency notification system can be used to automatically call affected residents.

Time to leave

There is no guarantee that every citizen will be contacted, but those above five methods allow regional officials to quickly notify large sections of the local population.

As another option, consider establishing an emergency phone tree in your neighborhood in conjunction with our local fire district.

Remember, there is nothing you own worth your life. Please evacuate immediately when asked by fire or law enforcement officials.

If you are concerned, don’t wait to be asked to leave. If you have to evacuate and there’s time, consider items to wear and carry, animal needs, proper vehicle precautions, and what to do inside and outside of your home.

Details can again be found in the Lake Tahoe Basin, “Fire Adapted Communities: The Next Step in Wildfire Preparedness” booklet, at livingwithfire.info/tahoe.

We encourage our residents and visitors to educate your families and friends to be prepared.

“Chief’s Corner” is a regular feature in the North Lake Tahoe Bonanza from North Lake Tahoe Fire Protection District Chief Mike Brown, offering information, tips and education material on fire safety, emergency preparedness and other pertinent topics.