Ready, Set, Go

Evacuation Protocols

Ready, Set, Go,is a program for residents that can help you prepare for an evacuation in case of any emergency. With large scale disasters possible every month of the year, evacuations have become more commonplace. We encourage the adage, ‘when in doubt, get out!’ If you feel threatened, go! Keep in mind, in some cases, there is no time for formal evacuation notifications due to quickly changing conditions.

Evacuation orders will be sent out via, CodeRED (you can sign up here or download the mobile app). Evacuation orders may also be received via radio, television and official social media channels, such as the Boise Fire Twitter page.

Wildfire burning in grassy area with two firefighters working to put it out

Wildfires

Each year, wildland fires threaten homes in Idaho’s wildland urban interface (WUI). Studies show that as many as 80 percent of the homes lost to wildland fires could have been saved if their owners had only followed a few simple fire-safe practices. In addition, wildland fire related deaths occur because people wait too long to leave their homes. Successfully preparing for a wildland fire enables you to take personal responsibility for protecting yourself, your family and your property. In order to achieve that goal, we use the Ready, Set, Go! Program. This program works in tandem with Idaho’s Firewise Communities program and other existing wildland fire public education efforts such as the Fire Adapted Communities Program and Living with Fire.

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Ready, Set, Go! Notifications

‘Ready, Set, Go!’ outlines the steps all citizens need to take in order to be prepared for and respond to an emergency.

READY: Level One - Notification

“Ready” means that you have prepared ahead of time for hazards that might threaten your home and community, such as registering with the Ada County alert called CodeRED that notifies residents in an emergency. Other steps include making a family communication plan, sharing phone numbers and contacts, and planning to make accommodations for your pets, prescriptions, papers and priceless possessions. What do you need to have packed in case of an evacuation? In the case of wildfire, it also means getting your home prepared by cleaning up pine needles, moving woodpiles away from structures and clearing brush and trees in your yard that might help spread a fire to your home.

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SET: Level Two - Pre-Evacuation

“Set” means that you are alert to a significant threat in your area, that you are packed to leave and prepared to leave at a moment’s notice if you must evacuate. When evacuation orders are given, you may have very little time to get away to safety, so preparation is important.

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GO: Level Three - Immediate Evacuation

“Go” means go, — it is time to evacuate immediately. If you choose to stay at home, you may not leave your property and you cannot depend on emergency personnel to help you.

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READY: Level 1 - Notification

  • There is a threat/hazard in your local area.
  • Monitor local social media, news channels and radio for emergency information.
  • This is the time to prepare any family members with special needs, mobile property and pets and/or livestock.
  • If conditions worsen, emergency services may contact you via an emergency notification system.
  • Designate an out-of-area contact who can relay information.
  • Plan how you’ll transport your pets.
  • Keep the car fuel tank at least half full.
Woman typing on laptop computer at wooden table.

SET: Level 2 - Pre-Evacuation

  • You must be prepared to leave at a moment’s notice.
  • There is significant danger in your area.
  • THIS MAY BE THE ONLY NOTICE YOU RECEIVE. Emergency services cannot guarantee that they will be able to notify you if conditions deteriorate rapidly.
  • Relocate to a specified shelter (if activated) or with family/friends outside the affected area.
  • You MAY have time to gather necessary items but doing so is at your own risk.
  • Load your 5Ps and 72-hour kit into your car.
  • Stay tuned to your TV, local radio stations or social media for updates.
  • Go early. Long before evacuation seems likely, READY, SET and GO. If you feel threatened, GO!
  • Face your car toward the street and close all windows. Keep your keys handy.
  • Wear clothes to shield you from heat, embers and flames: sturdy shoes, long-sleeved shirt and pants (wool or cotton), hat, handkerchief, and light-colored goggles.
  • Remain close to your house, drink plenty of water, and keep an eye on your family and pets until you are ready to leave.
  • If you have time, when leaving, post a visible form of notification that identifies that you have evacuated. Write EVACUATED on a pillow case and hang it at the end of your driveway.

ONLY IF YOU HAVE TIME - PREPARE YOUR HOME:

  • Close all windows and doors (inside and& outside).
  • Leave exterior and interior lights on.
  • Remove combustibles (patio furniture, firewood, etc.) within 30 feet of your home.
  • Remove vegetation that touches any part of the home where combustible building materials are used (wood sliding, shake roof, wood decking, wood fence, etc.).
  • Place metal (not wooden) ladder against side of house.
  • Shut off natural gas  and propane.

GO: Level 3 - Immediate Evacuation

  • Danger in your area is current or imminent and you should evacuate immediately.
  • If you choose to ignore the evacuation, you must understand that emergency services may not be available to assist you further.
  • DO NOT delay leaving to gather any belongings or make efforts to protect your home.
  • THIS WILL BE THE LAST NOTICE YOU RECEIVE.
  • Tune in to the local radio station or monitor social media for instructions.
  • Obey orders of law enforcement and fire agency officials.
  • Follow the designated evacuation routes. Your normal route may not be the safest.
  • Drive with your headlights on for visibility and safely.
  • Drive calmly, obey the rules of the road & pay special attention to emergency vehicles.
  • Do not block access to roadways for emergency vehicles or other evacuees.
  • Do not abandon vehicles on the roadway.

After you have safely evacuated:

  • Check in at an emergency shelter. Whether you stay there or not, your checking in will help others know you are safe.
  • If needed, take pets to a Pet Evacuation Center.
  • DO NOT call 9-1-1 for non-emergencies.
  • Do not attempt to re-enter the fire area until it is declared safe by law enforcement.

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