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Saturday, November 2, 2019

Living with wildfire risk

We have been talking about how to address my fear of wildfires - basically a fear of not being able to get away from them in time. It is interesting that once I had my earthquake survival kit packed and water, etc. stocked up at home I really don't worry about earthquakes. They just happen and then it is over and you have to deal with the consequences.

A wildfire though is in a definable place with the winds either sending it towards you or not. Roads can only take so many cars at once as people evacuate.

So how often do you pack up and leave when not at immediate risk? I wanted to leave when the Easy fire (Reagan Library adjacent) started even though it was a ways away. The risk was that options for driving away would be limited if 2 freeways were closed instead of just the one that was closed immediately. The winds were blowing our way.

We came home after one night and then that very same evening the Maria fire started even closer to us but the winds were not likely to send it our way. Hubby suggested I pack for evacuation before going to bed and have my cell phone near me to get any evacuation alert so that is what  I did.

I'm learning to understand wind patterns. I need to learn more routes the leave in addition to major ones. We are considering whether or not for the car to be gone all day when one of us is at home. I need to figure out how to have our and the dog's meds packed and ready to go while rotating them so they are current. The dog needs food too and we need a change of clothes at least.  That goes beyond earthquake preparedness because usually you don't have to leave in the earthquake scenario.

I found this great Wildfire And Emergency Go Kit article and will be working on getting everything together for it as well as making it supplement out earthquake supplies with are basically food and water.

So that is the plan. Any additional ideas?

10 comments:

  1. I didn't see any solar powered chargers or solar powered radios on the list but I suppose in a smokey area they wouldn't work anyway. It's one of the items listed for putting together a go-bag for ice storms we have here. I didn't see extra cash listed either but I suppose there's a good reason not to list the obvious and give thieves any ideas.

    STAY SAFE!

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    1. Thanks for the reminder about solar chargers - they would work better in S. California than in N. California where the list originated. We do keep a stack of cash for emergencies.

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  2. You sound as if you are getting well prepared in case you have to leave. Hope you never have to.

    God bless.

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  3. Having a plan in place and necessary items easy to grab makes for a more peaceful mind in my book.

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  4. As a native here, I have vivid memories of our little valley (Simi) being surrounded by wildfires when I was a young child, and on multiple occasions as a teenager I can remember turning around at Kanan several while trying to get to Malibu, due to wildfires. They are so woven into the fabric of my being a Californian, that I often forget what it must look like to those that don't live here, or who are new to our state. You will hopefully take heart in knowing you have multiple exit routes, and that you live in a dense population area that has a multitude of both first responders and communication methods to alert those possibly in harm's way. And ultimately, if it gets to be too much, you always have the option to relocate, perhaps closer to your granddaughter. Silver lining and all that. ☺

    There is a wonderful article in the LA Times today about the inherent risks every state faces, whether it be wildfires, earthquakes, flooding, tornadoes, blizzards, artic freezes, or hurricanes, and how at the end of the day the majority of Californians have no plans to leave for elsewhere due to our state's overwhelming natural beauty and wonderful weather.

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    1. I agree with you about the no plans to leave and lived in CA for about 25 years before heading to Atlanta and then back again. I've lived where there were tornadoes, blizzards, artic freezes, floods, earthquakes and wildfires. I don't know why but the idea of being caught in a fire is the one that triggers anxiety in me. Not rationale but there it is!

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    2. I have an irrational fear of turbulence while flying, so you are definitely not alone!

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    3. It was the horrors of the Paradise fire last year that freaked me out I'm sure. I just have to have plans in place for different scenarios so I can relax about it.

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  5. It sounds like you have sensible plans and you can spring into action when you need to!
    - Dar @ anexactinglife

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  6. Hope that having this kit to put together and a plan in place will bring you some comfort. I don't know that I could do it, though. My heart goes out to all in harm's way from the fires. Just so sad.

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