For maybe the first time in history, most of us are at home with an abundance of time on our hands. This is a great opportunity to prepare your family for wildfire season by creating a defensible space around your home and practicing emergency procedures.
You and your family can practice wildfire preparedness together by creating your own home evacuation plan. Have your child draw the evacuation map with your help. They should outline your house and point out the family meeting place – the spot where your family will meet should you have to evacuate. All of the materials needed and basic instructions are detailed below.
Items you’ll need:
- Piece of paper
- Pencil, pen, and 2-3 colored pencils/markers
Basic Instructions for how to draw your evacuation map:
- Draw your house from an aerial perspective, include the driveway and the nearest street.
- Draw the rooms in the house and label them (ie bedroom, dining room, kitchen, etc.)
- Label where the windows and doors are and where the family meeting spot is (mailbox, neighbor’s driveway, street sign)
- Using one of the colored utensils, draw a route from the bedroom to the nearest exit and to the meeting place – label that route 1
- Using the other colored utensil, draw a second route from the bedroom to another exit and to the meeting place – label that route 2
Having an evacuation plan is one of the most important things you can do with your child to prepare for any emergency. Remember to know your exits, develop a route, and mark your meeting spot. It’s also a good idea to practice your route and know how long it will take you to get outside.
For an adorable example of evacuation maps and proof that we are never too young to learn about fire safety, watch this video.