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NCFPD teams with Sheriff's Dept on disaster preparedness

Lucette Moramarco

Associate Editor

North County Fire Protection District and the Sheriff's Department are collaborating on several projects to educate local communities on personal preparedness, especially during a disaster (i.e., fire, floods, earthquakes).

One project happened Thursday, Jan. 5, when Sheriff's Dept. Crime Prevention Specialist Heather Mitchell went out with a crew from Station 1 to assess roads near Sandia Creek for flooding.

Mitchell said, "We used this opportunity during this rainy weather to remind citizens to be aware of road closures and emergency vehicles. This is just one of many endeavors we will be doing."

For those residents not on Twitter where both agencies post current conditions due to weather, accidents or criminal activity, first responders have a few tips on how to respond when an emergency vehicle is headed their way – "pull over!" – or they see 'road closed' signs during or after a rainstorm – "do not cross the road" (to avoid getting caught in a flood).

Another way the departments are promoting emergency preparedness is by presenting their information at club meetings. Mitchell and NCF Captain Tom Harrington and Mike Crane from CERT (Community Emergency Response Team) gave the program at the January Encore Club meeting, Jan. 3.

Mitchell said, "This was the first presentation of the year that kicks off our dual-agency collaboration on emergency preparedness planning." They discussed the importance of creating one's own personal preparedness plan and the benefits of having one before disaster strikes.

They also handed out disaster preparedness booklets with evacuation tips compliments of the County Office of Emergency Services. Mitchell added that there was "a huge interest in community members wanting to join CERT."

To request a presentation, Mitchell can be contacted at 760-451-3124.

North County CERT has an office at 337 E Mission Road, Fallbrook, that is open Monday through Friday, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m .; visitors are welcome. For more information, visit


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