Fires, floods and evacuation plans

ASHLAND, Ore.– Ashland is rethinking it’s evacuation plans in the event of an emergency. Heavy rain and snow this week, and at times, hazardous road conditions are providing yet another reason for the city to reconsider its plans.

After this summer’s deadly Camp fire in Paradise, California, Ashland Fire and Rescue noticed similarities between the two cities entry points. With one major road in and out of the city, Ashland is looking at its evacuation plans and how to better prepare residents in case of an emergency.

One topic is to communicate more with the public on how to leave the city. They caution on creating a predefined exit. If in a panic, people might go that route even though that may be where the emergency is coming from.

“We really want folks to know is what we call situational awareness in the fire service and it’s being aware of your surroundings and being where you are, where you live and how you egress and ingress from that location,” said Terri Eubanks, community preparedness coordinator for Ashland.

The agency says an evacuation plan is only as good as the individual that’s ready for it. Still, the city plans to run an emergency drill in early May to prepare for types of incidents like the one in Paradise.

They also offer Community Emergency Response Team (CERT) training for residents in Ashland for free. Classes offered help to prepare people for such things like disaster preparedness, fire suppression, and urban search and rescue.

 

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