Advice to Keep You Safe if Wildfires Strike
In 2022, there were over 68,000 wildfires that affected 7.5 million acres of land in the US. These fires ignited in natural areas such as a forest, grassland, or prairie. They typically spread quickly, igniting brush, trees, and homes, disrupting transportation, gas, power, and communications systems and costing billions of dollars every year.
If your community is victim to wildfire conditions, FEMA offers these guidelines:
- Evacuate immediately if authorities tell you to do so or if you feel conditions are unsafe.
- If trapped, call 911 immediately. Turn on the lights to help rescuers find you.
- Listen to emergency radio or local alerting systems for current information and instructions.
- Use an N95 respirator mask to keep harmful particles out of the air you breathe.
- If you are not ordered to evacuate but smoky conditions exist, stay inside in a safe location or go to a community building where smoke levels are lower.
- Listen to authorities to know when it safe to return and if water is safe to drink.
- Send text messages or use social media to reach out to your family and friends. Phone systems are often busy following a disaster. Make calls only in emergencies.