Wildfire season: What to take from your home during an evacuation

Utah Wildfires

SALT LAKE CITY, Utah (ABC4 News) – This past weekend was an eye-opening experience for thousands of Utah families. Wildfires sparked in neighborhoods near Saratoga Springs and Lehi causing thousands of families to quickly evacuate their homes.

These scary events have many Utah families thinking about being prepared for natural disasters and about what things would they take from their home in case of an evacuation.

So, if you ever come face-to-face with reality of having to evacuate your home…what do you bring? What are the most important items that need leave your home with you?

Besides being prepared with a disaster kit also referred to as a ’72-hour-kit’, you need to have important documents also easily accessible to be able to take with you when you evacuate.

The United States Forest Service along with the U.S. Department of Agriculture released a ‘fire evacuation check list’ to ensure that people don’t leave behind anything critical in case of a evacuation:

  • Your driver’s license
  • Proof of insurance
  • Medical records
  • Passports
  • Social Security cards
  • A list of personal contacts (if not already stored in your cellphone with you)
  • The deed to your house
  • Round up your pets, always have their leashes, carriers accessible
  • Have important files, back-up discs, USBs in a central location ready to take from your home
  • Computer hard-drives if you don’t have them back-upped elsewhere
  • Photo albums
  • Expensive jewelry and electronics
  • Disaster kit with clothes, toiletries etc.
  • Keep car keys, wallets, credit cards etc. in a central location that will be easy to grab
  • Before you leave, close all doors and windows
  • Turn off propane gas at tank and take it with you or store it in a secure place such as a bunker away from your home

Several sources suggest that individuals and families make personalized lists of what things are necessary to take in case of an evacuation and to keep their list in an easily accessible place to refer to when the time comes.

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