Have an Evacuation Plan
In general, there are two levels of evacuation notices:
The first is sometimes referred to as a voluntary evacuation or evacuation warning. It is a warning to persons within a designated area that a threat to life or property exists or is likely to exist in the immediate future; you are not required to evacuate although it is recommended.
The second is sometimes referred to as a mandatory evacuation or an evacuation order. It is a warning to persons within the designated area that an imminent threat to life and property exists.
Sometimes, instead of evacuation, there will be a Shelter In Place order. During a Shelter In Place order, you should go indoors and shut and lock doors and windows, and prepare to self-sustain until further notice or given further direction by emergency personnel.
Know Your Zone!
The Yolo County Office of Emergency Services is coordinating a process to create pre-planned evacuation zones throughout Yolo County to help the evacuations process. Find your zone at the Yolo County OES "Know Your Zone" website.
The amount of time you have to prepare for an evacuation may depend on the hazard. If you feel you are at risk of being evacuated, consider organizing the following for a Grab-and-Go kit:
- Have copies of important personal papers, such as deed to your house, proof of insurance, medical records, passports, social security cards, photos. Also, have your driver's license and a list of personal contacts.
- Critical medical items, such as prescriptions.
- Essential valuables.
- Clothing, footwear, and toiletries.
- Cell phone & charger.
- Food and water for at least 3 days.
- Flashlights and batteries.
- Child care items, such as diapers, formula, medicine.
- Pet care items, such as carrier case, food, etc.
- Cash on hand, credit cards, checkbook, as well as keys.
- Blankets (2 per person).
Additional considerations prior to an evacuation order:
- Identify an out of town person you will contact in the event of an evacuation.
- Fill your vehicle with gas and keep your vehicle maintained.
- Know where your utility shutoffs are located and learn how to safely shut off all utilities.
- If you live in an area prone to flooding, consider having sandbag materials on hand.
- Stay informed with Emergency Alerts by signing up for Emergency Notifications.
During an Evacuation
Remember to stay calm and follow any local official agency's evacuation instructions. If you have time, consider the following:
- Consider removing any hanging objects outside. Bring any objects not nailed down, inside.
- Unplug appliances.
- Shut off utilities to prevent additional dangers. Keep in mind you will need a utility company to turn your gas back on when you return home.
- Protect indoor items. For instance, in an event of flooding, move valuables upstairs.
- Lock all your doors, windows, and garage before leaving.
- Follow the recommended evacuation routes. Do not take shortcuts, as streets may be blocked.
- Continue to monitor local media outlets for additional situational information.