July 10, 2018
READY, SET, GO!
You can’t help but notice that we are in the midst of a long, windy dry spell. While the 4th of July has passed, our susceptibility to wildfire is just beginning. We have already seen several small wildfires develop over the past few weeks throughout the Columbia River Gorge on both sides of the river.
The memory of the Eagle Creek and Archer Mountain fires is still fresh in minds and with a long fire season ahead of us, now is a great time to prepare yourself and your family in the event you find yourself, home or property in the path of a wildfire.
As a reminder, there are 3 distinct evacuation notices that can be issued in the event of a wildfire. These notices can be likened to the following actions:
Level 1- Ready
In the event you are notified by local authorities that your home or property is in a level 1 evacuation notice, you should begin preparations to evacuate. This can mean gathering and staging the most important documents and items from your home so that they are easily loaded for transport in the event you must leave immediately.
Level 2- Set
A level 2 evacuation notice should be cause for loading all the items you identified earlier to minimize the time needed to rapidly evacuate from your property. These items should be considered critical and irreplaceable and those things that can be condensed into a few plastic totes or boxes.
Level 3- Go
This is the last and highest level of notification and indicates you should leave the area immediately. It is true that you cannot be forced to evacuate your property however, once you make the decision to evacuate you can be prohibited from returning until such time that your personal safety and the safety of emergency personnel can be ensured.
Typically, the Sheriff’s Office will be the notifying agency. Notification may be in person or through a mass notification system via telephone, email or text.
It is good to remember that evacuation notices may not always be issued in numerical order. In other words, depending on how rapidly a fire develops and based on the availability of resources, you could receive a level 3 notification immediately without ever receiving a level 1 or level 2 notification.
Because of this, it is always a good idea to prepare now. Especially during this fire season. It may be wise to just consider yourself in a level 1 mode always. Identify your critical items, stage them in a place where they can be easily accessible and be prepared to load them up for a quick departure.
We will always strive to put out information as quickly as possible and the best places to find quick and updated information is on our website www.skamaniasheriff.com , our Facebook page and twitter @skamaniasheriff.
If you find that the information posted on these outlets has not been update for a long period of time this will indicate that there is no new information to release.