Get Your Evacuation Plan Ready Today


If you are instructed to EVACUATE your home, will you know what to do? Do you know where you will go? How will family members be notified of where to go? Are you prepared to take your pets with you?

Planning ahead is vital to ensuring you and your family can evacuate quickly and safely. Create a plan today to be prepared tomorrow. 


Learn what types of disasters are likely in your community and make an evacuation plan that includes information for every family member as you may not always be together when disaster strikes. 

Include in in your plan how you will leave and where you will go. Include in the plan how you might receive an emergency alert or warning, what your evacuation route will be, where you plan to shelter and how your family will communicate with each other during the disaster.

 v  In developing your evacuation plan, consider the makeup of your household and the needs and responsibilities of each member of the family, including pets. Among the factors to consider are the ages of household members, dietary needs, medical needs, disabilities or access and functional needs, languages spoken, pets and service animals and cultural and religious considerations.

 v  Identify several locations you and your family can go in an emergency, such as a friend’s house, a motel or pre-identified community shelter locations. Make sure to include locations in different directions from your home so you have options during an emergency.

 v  If you have pets, make sure to identify places that will allow them to stay there.

v  Be familiar with alternative routes and other means of transportation out of your neighborhood. Be prepared that your only way out of your neighborhood may be on foot depending on the type of disaster.

 v  Make sure to create a family communication and reunification plan so you can contact family members should you be separated.

v  Make a “go-bag” you can carry should you need to evacuate by foot or on public transportation.  Also have supplies available should you have to evacuate in your own vehicle and for a longer distance.

v  If evacuation seems likely, make sure your vehicle has a full tank of gas. Plan to take only one vehicle when you evacuate to avoid congestion on the roads.

v  Keep a portable emergency kit in your vehicle with the following items: jumper cables, flares or reflective triangle, ice scraper, car cell phone charger, blanket, map, cat litter or sand for traction.

v  If you do not have a vehicle, plan how you will leave if needed. Arrange with family members or neighbors for possible transportation.

v  If you have a pet, make sure to create a pet evacuation plan. Designate a neighbor to check on your pet should you not be home. Identify shelters that may take pets and alternative sites should a shelter not accept animals.


v  Listen to a battery-powered radio to follow local evacuation instructions

v  Take your emergency supply kid with you

v  Leave early enough to avoid being trapped by severe weather

v  Take your pets with you but be prepared as not all shelters will allow animals

v  Secure your home before leaving. Unplug electrical equipment but leave refrigerator and freezer plugged in unless there is a threat of flooding. If instructed to do so, shut off water, gas and electricity before leaving.

v  Wear sturdy shoes and clothing that provides protection such as long sleeves, pants and a hat

v  Check to make sure your neighbors have a way to leave

v  Follow all recommended evacuation routes. Don’t take shortcuts as roads may be blocked or closed

v  Be aware of possible road hazards such as washed-out roads or bridges and downed power lines. Don’t drive into flooded areas.


v  Check with local officials to determine when it is okay to return to your home

v  Let friends and family know when you are planning to return home and notify them when you arrive

v  Charge electronic devices prior to returning home in the event power outages continue

v  Fill up the gas tank on your vehicle before returning home

v  Bring water and non-perishable items with you

v  If you need to use a generator once you return to your home, use them away from your home and never run a generator inside a home or garage or connect it to you home’s electrical system.


Recent Announcements


    One of the quickest ways you can receive alerts on an emergency happening in your area is on your phone. But we can’t alert you, if you aren’t signed up to receive emergency alerts.

    Don’t wait for an emergency to happen before signing up. Make sure you and your family are registered for alerts today.  When you are signed up to receive emergency alerts, you will be notified of an emergency in the city or county. Officials can identify affected areas and send messages via your cell phone that describes a situation and any protective actions that need to be taken.

    To sign up, go to the sheriff’s office webpage at click on the emergency telephone notification icon in the middle of the page. Emergency notification system.

    Select whether you live in the city or the county.

    Tell all your family members and friends to sign up to receive alerts on their phones as well.


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