If you need to
evacuate, there may or may not be time and provisions for
a government ordered evacuation. If one exists, follow
However, let your
own common sense override any lack of an official warning and
evacuate if you feel like the situation warrants. This is
especially true if you have special needs within your home such
as the elderly, expectant mothers, etc.
ideas shown below on Evacuation.
Escape Routes - Ask local
authorities about emergency evacuation routes.
Record your specific evacuation route
directions on a map and keep it in your 72 Hour Kit.
To Local Hospitals
Yourself and Your Family - When community
evacuations become necessary, local officials provide
information to the public through the media. In some
circumstances, other warning methods, such as sirens or
telephone calls, also are used. Additionally, there may be
circumstances under which you and your family feel threatened
or endangered and you need to leave your home, school, or
workplace to avoid these situations.
The amount of time you have to leave will depend on the
hazard. If the event is a weather condition, such as a
hurricane that can be monitored, you might have a day or two to
get ready. However, many disasters allow no time for people to
gather even the most basic necessities, which is why planning
ahead is essential.
FEMA provides some online help for you to obtain maps of
potential disaster related areas near where you live.
this link to learn more about obtaining maps of potential
Always do the following:
- Keep a full tank of gas in your car if an evacuation
seems likely. Gas stations may be closed during emergencies
and unable to pump gas during power outages.
- Plan to take one car per family to reduce congestion
- Make transportation arrangements with friends or your
local government if you do not own a car.
- Listen to a battery-powered radio and follow local
- Gather your family and go if you are instructed to
- Leave early enough to avoid being trapped by severe
- Follow recommended evacuation routes.
- Do not take shortcuts; they may be
- Be alert for washed-out roads and bridges.
- Do not drive into flooded areas.
- Stay away from downed power lines.
If there is time, do the following:
- Gather your 72 Hour Kits.
- Wear sturdy shoes and clothing that provides some
protection, such as long pants, long-sleeved shirts, and a
- Secure your home:
- Close and lock doors and windows.
- Unplug electrical equipment, such as computers, radios
and televisions, and small appliances, such as toasters and
- Leave freezers and refrigerators plugged in unless
there is a risk of flooding.
- Let others know where you are going.
Sheltering - This is a form of evacuation but
you just don't travel anywhere. Click here to learn more about
Plans - Make a set of
plans for your family and discuss it periodically to make sure
everyone knows what they need to. Be sure to include the
following in your plan:
Where to meet during a home evacuation, then it
will be easy to see who has not escaped yet.
More than once, someone has gone back inside
and tried to find a person who had actually
already escaped. This should be a place that is
not likely to be confused with somewhere else.
For example, if you have oak trees in the front
and back yards, it does not work to say you
will meet by the oak tree.
Even if your emergency is to
evacuate a house that is on fire, having a plan
can be of benefit. For example, your family
should have a common gathering place once you
get outside of the house.
Who to call as a central place.
Pick someone who would not likely be involved
in your same emergency. Put their contact info
in everyone's 72 Hour Emergency Kits and into
their cell phones.
Family Communications. Determine the preferred
methods of family communication. Be advised that
during an earthquake, the cell towers may be the
first things to stop working.
Utility shut-off and safety. Keep proper equipment
for each utility (gas, water &
electricity) and teach everyone how to turn
them off. If there are locks make sure everyone
knows where the keys or combinations are located.
Practice this. However, if you have natural gas, be
aware that only certified natural gas personnel or
plumbers can turn the gas back on, so you can just
pretend to turn off the natural gas for your drill.
Systems - Click here to learn about Warning
Most of the material on this page can be