Wildfire Preparedness: Put Your Safety First on May First

Is your family prepared to react to a wildfire? Beginning Saturday, is your annual opportunity to put your plan together for your family and your community in advance of wildfire season.

As part of National Wildfire Community Preparedness Day, Saturday, May 1, is a day-long campaign encouraging people and communities across the country to take action to raise awareness and reduce wildfire risks.

Create defensible space / Source: NFPA

The threat of wildfires in California is now nearly year-round. The latest U.S. Drought Monitor report shows 88% of California is experiencing severe drought. That’s more than 34.5 million Californians currently living in drought areas.

Already in 2021, Cal Fire has responded to hundreds of wildfires across the state. Saturday’s Preparedness Day is a great opportunity to focus on how you can help protect your property and connect with your neighbors to improve everyone’s safety.

Cal OES State Fire & Rescue Chief Brian Marshall said all Californians can do three things to prepare for wildfires, known as “Ready, Set, Go!,” which are easy steps to help build an evacuation plan in case of a wildfire:

Step One: “Get Ready.” Prepare your home with risk reduction projects, like creating defensible space and hardening your home.

Step Two: “Get Set.” Solidify your family emergency plan so you are ready if a wildfire threatens your home. Build and communicate an evacuation plan and prepare emergency supplies for each person in your home, including your pets.

Step Three: “Go!” Californians should know when to evacuate and what to do if they need to shelter in place during a fire.

Over the last four years alone, California has experienced seven of the ten largest wildfires ever recorded in state history.

National Wildfire Community Preparedness Day is a start to the statewide Wildfire Preparedness Week – May 2 – 8 – which gives Californians a chance to ready their homes, families, and communities for the impacts of wildfire and other extreme weather events.

Californians can learn more about fire safety and preparedness at www.ReadyForWildfire.org and on the Ready for Wildfire smartphone app.

Ellie Mirmazaheri

Ellie Mirmazaheri joined the California Governor's Office of Emergency Services in 2021 after working in television news for a decade. Most recently, she served as an Executive Producer for a local TV station in Des Moines, Iowa, covering historic severe weather and the 2020 Iowa Caucus. Before moving to the Midwest, Ellie was a News Producer at stations in Eugene, Oregon and Sacramento. Ellie is a Sacramento State graduate.

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