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Be Red Cross ready to evacuate


Last updated 11/26/2017 at Noon

SAN DIEGO – Since fire season is all year round; any time is a good time to prepare evacuation plans. Prepare San Diego is a regional resiliency initiative driven by the Red Cross to help prepare the San Diego region for human emergencies and disasters.

In addition to the general preparedness recommendations listed below, here are a few helpful tips that make it easier to evacuate when needed.

For residents with pets that might need urgent evacuation, confine all pets to one room so they can be quickly and easily picked up to go.

  • Back the car into the driveway for a safer and more efficient way out.
  • Always keep at least half a tank of gas in the car.
  • Consider putting together a “digital disaster kit.” Put all important documents onto a thumb drive, which can be grabbed quickly, if an evacuation is called.
Next, get a kit, make a plan and be informed.
  • Keep supplies in an easy-to-carry, “grab-and-go” emergency preparedness kit to use at home or take in case of evacuation.
  • Have multiple kits, for example, one for the house and one for the vehicle.
  • Include nonperishable foods, enough water for at least a gallon per person per day, a flashlight and crank radio, cellphone chargers, extra cash, personal items, medications, and special items needed for children or pets.
  • Be sure to make a plan.
  • Meet with family members, make a plan and practice it together, including preparations for any pets as well.
  • Choose two places to meet. One location should be outside the home and one location should be outside the neighborhood, in case of evacuation.
  • Choose an out-of-area emergency contact person. It may be easier to text or call long distance if local phone lines are overloaded or out of service.
  • Have multiple evacuation routes in case one route is blocked. Practice driving the route regularly. Muscle memory can help greatly during disasters when emotions and tensions are running high.
Remember, it’s not necessary to wait for an official evacuation order. Be sure to leave with time to spare, if an emergency threatens. This action helps you and first responders.

Lastly, be informed.

Identify how local authorities will send notifications during a disaster and how to get information, whether through radio, TV or even social media.

Social media is being used more and more to access information during disasters. Follow the San Diego Red Cross, San Diego Fire-Rescue Department, Cal Fire and many others on Facebook and Twitter for updates or download the Red Cross Emergency App for localized wildfire alerts, preparedness info and to find Red Cross shelters nearby in the event of an emergency.

Join the movement and get prepared at


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