The American Red Cross of Western Colorado is working closing with local emergency managers and is standing by to respond at moment’s notice if requested by our government partners. For more information about the Red Cross response to the Simms fire follow us on Facebook: @RedCrossColorado, Twitter @COWYRedCross or our blog: https://cowyredcrossblog.org/simms-fire/
With the 2022 wildfire season off to an early start, it is essential to have an emergency kit and an evacuation plan in place for you and your family. Getting ready is easy. There are simple steps you can take to be prepared:
- Create an evacuation plan. Plan what to do in case you are separated from your family during an emergency and if you have to evacuate. Coordinate your plan with your child’s school, your work and your community’s emergency plans. Plan multiple routes to local shelters, register family members with special medical needs as required and make plans for pets. If you already have an emergency plan, talk about it again with family members so everyone knows what to do if an emergency occurs.
- Build an emergency kit with a gallon of water per person, per day, non-perishable food, a flashlight, battery-powered radio, first aid kit, medications, supplies for an infant or pets if applicable, a multi-purpose tool, personal hygiene items, copies of important papers, cell phone chargers, extra cash, blankets, maps of the area and emergency contact information. Because of the pandemic, include a mask for everyone in your household. If you already have a disaster kit, now is the time make sure the food and water is still okay to consume and that copies of important documents are up to date.
- Be informed. Find out how local officials will contact you during a wildfire emergency and how you will get important information, such as evacuation orders.Download the free Red Cross Emergency app to help keep you and your loved ones safe with real-time alerts, open Red Cross shelter locations and safety advice on wildfires and other emergencies. To download the app, search for ‘American Red Cross’ in your app store or go to redcross.org/apps.
WILDFIRE SAFETY AND PREVENTION
- Be prepared to evacuate at a moment’s notice and obey all evacuation orders from officials.
- Post emergency phone numbers by every phone in your house and make sure everyone has those numbers in their cell phones.
- Don’t drive your vehicle onto dry grass or brush. Hot components under your vehicle can spark fires.
- Use equipment responsibly. Lawn mowers, chain saws, tractors and trimmers can all spark a wildfire.
- Use caution any time you use fire. Dispose of charcoal briquettes and fireplace ashes properly, never leave any outdoor fire unattended, and make sure that outdoor fires are fully extinguished before leaving the area.
- If residential debris burning is allowed — use caution. After obtaining any necessary permits, ensure that burning is not currently restricted in your area.
- Store combustible or flammable materials in approved safety containers away from the house.
- Find an outdoor water source such as a pond, well, even a swimming pool, and have a hose that can reach any area of your property.
- Create a fire-resistant zone free of leaves, debris or flammable materials for at least 30 feet out from your home.
- Regularly clean roofs and gutters.
- Make sure driveway entrances and your house number are clearly marked so fire vehicles can get to your home.
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 cruzrojaamericana.org, or visit us on Twitter at @RedCross.