The Californian

How to stay safe and prepare for a fire

Staffer offers life-saving tips during fires

Maddy Klessel, Staff Writer

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lifornia devastated the lives of many people in Butte County last month.

Paradise, a town in Butte County, was wiped out, forcing residents to flee for their lives. Many Cal High alumni attending Chico State came home early  for Thanksgiving break because of the fire. 

In the case of a wildfire that’s close to home, here is a list of tips and advice that will be useful in case of emergency.

1. Pay attention to the news The news always knows what’s going on around you. If you are unaware of the current situation around you, you and your family could be in danger.

2. Notify people when you leave

There were hundreds of people still missing weeks after the Camp Fire. Making a phone call to a relative or friend to tell them you’re leaving is good idea. Tell them where you plan on going and for how long you plan to stay. Keep in contact as much as you can.

3. If you know someone else involved, try and reach out to them

 This way, they have contact with someone before they may leave and become “missing.”

4. If you are in a danger zone, pack your stuff and leave anyway

If you wait to leave, there could be a large amount of traffic that could become hazardous. Don’t wait until it’s too late.

5. Always carry certain supplies in your car 

Always have a pack of water and some food, such as granola bars, in your car. Keep at least one extra pair of clothes in your trunk in case of any emergency.

“A Go-Bag for emergency purposes,” Cal’s School Resource Officer Abbas Husain said.

This is especially important for the many local families that live in areas near open space.

“My family keeps items such as water and blankets in our family car to be prepared for the worst,” said freshman Ryan Dawson, who lives in Norris Canyon. 

6. Don’t panic

Panicking can only make the situation worse. Remain calm and collected. 

7. Remember to bring pets

Pets are part of the family and aren’t meant to be left at home. If you leave, bring your pets with you.

8. Keep the lights on in your home

This way, if firefighters come rushing to your neighborhood, they will be able to see your home through all of the smoke caused by the fire so they can save it.

9.When you’re ready to return, make sure it’s safe first 

Finish where you started by paying attention to the news. The news will inform the public when it is safe to return .

“There is no magic bullet, especially if it’s as something as severe as the Camp Fire,” Husain said. “I’ve never been in a situation to evacuate or tell someone to leave. I would do whatever I can to help them voluntarily leave their home.” 

The fires in California this year were devastating. But many people followed these tips to remain safe. 

In case a wildfire occurs near you or someone you know, you can always contribute by following these tips or helping someone else near you. 

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How to stay safe and prepare for a fire