You are using an outdated browser. Please upgrade your browser to improve your experience.

Red Cross Urges Caution When Returning Home After a Wildfire

Red Cross Urges Caution When Returning Home After a Wildfire
We want to remind local residents who will be returning to areas that have been impacted by the Roaring Lion Fire, that they should exercise caution

Hamilton, MT, August 6, 2016—Montana Red Cross continues to operate an evacuation shelter at the River Church on Cooper Lane in Hamilton while some residents make plans to return home in areas where the evacuation order has been lifted.

“We want to remind local residents who will be returning to areas that have been impacted by the Roaring Lion Fire, that they should exercise caution,” says Diane Wright, Executive Director of Montana Red Cross. “There are numerous ways you can get hurt if you don’t pay close attention.”

SAFETY CHECKLIST FOR RESIDENTS WHO ARE RETURNING HOME AFTER A WILDFIRE

  • Use caution when entering burned areas as hazards may still exist, including hot spots, which can flare up without warning.
  • Avoid damaged or fallen power lines, poles and downed wires.
  • Watch for ash pits and mark them for safety—warn family and neighbors to keep clear of ash pits also.
  • Watch animals closely and keep them under your direct control. Hidden embers and hot spots could burn your pets’ paws or hooves.
  • Wet debris down to minimize breathing dust particles and put out any remaining embers..
  • Wear leather gloves, long sleeves and pants, and heavy soled shoes to protect your skin.
  • Do not enter your home until fire officials say it is safe.
  • Follow public health guidance on safe cleanup of fire ash and the safe use of masks.
  • Cleaning products, paint, batteries and damaged fuel containers need to be disposed of properly to avoid risk. Ensure your food and water are safe.
  • Discard any food that has been exposed to heat, smoke or soot.
  • Do not ever use water that you think may be contaminated to wash dishes, brush teeth, prepare food, wash hands, make ice or make baby formula.
  • For more information, download the free Red Cross Wildfire App or Emergency App at http://www.redcross.org/prepare/mobile-apps or go to http://www.redcross.org/get-help/prepare-for-emergencies.

    Donate

    You can help people affected by disasters like wildfires, as well as countless other crises at home and around the world, by making a donation to the American Red Cross. Your gift enables the Red Cross to prepare for and provide shelter, food, emotional support and other assistance in response to disasters. To make a donation, please go to redcross.org/montana or call 1-800-272-6668. Contributions may also be sent to American Red Cross of Montana, 1300 28th Street South, Great Falls, MT 59405.

    About the American Red Cross:

    The American Red Cross shelters, feeds and provides emotional support to victims of disasters; supplies about 40 percent of the nation's blood; teaches skills that save lives; provides international humanitarian aid; and supports military members and their families. The Red Cross is a not-for-profit organization that depends on volunteers and the generosity of the American public to perform its mission. For more information, please visit redcross.org or visit us on Twitter at @RedCross.