Flood Evacuation Information
Preparing For An Evacuation:
In flooding situations, residents in high risk areas should listen to the local media and follow the instructions of local emergency and transportation officials. Prepare ahead by organizing an emergency evacuation “Grab & Go Kit” with necessary prescription medications, personal toiletries, change of clothing, insurance papers and other important documents (such as land title documents or other information that would be difficult to replace).
If you are evacuated, local officials will provide you with information about the location of a reception centre. You are encouraged to register all family members at the reception centre so emergency responders know that you are accounted for and safe.
Short term assistance for immediate needs of food, shelter, clothing and emotional support will be available at the reception centre. Emergency Social Services volunteers provide assistance to people for the first three days after a disaster. Assistance includes assessment and referral to services you may need, short term help for food, clothing and shelter, emotional support and family reunification.
There are three key stages in the evacuation process:
1. EVACUATION ALERT
The City of Chilliwack issues a warning about an imminent threat to life and property, and people in the defined area should be ready to leave on short notice. This notice may vary from a few days to a few hours, and will either be delivered via personal contact or through the media.
Things You Should Do Now!
Gather essential items such as medications, eye glasses, valuable papers, immediate care needs for dependents and irreplaceable belongings.
If you need transportation, you will be provided with information with respect to making arrangements for transportation.
Prepare to evacuate disabled persons and the elderly. Relocate large pets and livestock to a safe area immediately.
If you have made private arrangements for shelter, this is the time to proceed to that location. Please be sure to leave word with neighbours or at a reception centre.
2. EVACUATION ORDER
The City of Chilliwack issues an Evacuation Order and, people should leave the area immediately along the specified routes.
An evacuation order will only be issued in response to imminent potential loss of life or injury because of any potential danger to the population at risk. Members of the RCMP, Search and Rescue, Fire Department and other agencies may be involved in expediting that action through door to door contact, the electronic media or other communication channels.
It is very important that residents follow the directions of emergency services personnel. As soon as advised, those affected should leave their homes or businesses immediately and go either to friends and relatives in unaffected areas or to the designated reception centre. Generally, we will attempt to provide early warning, giving people a chance to remove themselves and their treasured belongings in advance. However, this is not always possible.
If You Receive An Evacuation Order
Each neighbourhood will have a designated reception centre and corresponding shelters. Evacuees will be directed by emergency services personnel to first go to the reception centre and from there they will be directed to the appropriate evacuation centre.
The reception centre is key. If there is a major event, friends and relatives will be calling to ensure loved ones are safe. By registering, we can keep track of where families are located.
- Gather your “Grab & Go Kit.”
- Proceed quickly and calmly to the identified reception centre following the specified routes.
- Keep a flashlight and portable radio with you.
- Ensure that you have not forgotten any necessity. Travel will be one-way only and re-entry will be restricted.
- The police will enforce an Evacuation Order and provide security in evacuated areas.
Additional Important Information You Need To Know If You Have To Evacuate
- Always follow the instructions of local emergency officials.
- Take your personal emergency “Grab & Go Kit” with you along with important papers/documents.
- Ensure each family member has waterproof clothing and footwear.
- Lock all doors and windows and double check to ensure gas, electricity and water are shut off.
- If you are evacuating your premises, shut off your gas valve at the meter. You can turn your gas off at the main shut off valve on the inlet pipe next to your gas meter. Once the gas is shut off at the meter, do not turn it back on yourself.
- Know how to turn off your gas meter, visit: Fortis BC Website on How to turn off your meter.
a. Obtain information about electrical safety www.bchydro.com or http://www.safetyauthority.ca.
b. Take extra care when driving; familiar roads may look dramatically different when flooded. Be sure to drive along specified evacuation routes.
- If you are planning to travel, check road conditions at Drive BC www.drivebc.ca.
- Do not walk through moving water. Less than 15 cm (six inches) of moving water can make you fall. If you have to walk in water, go where the water is not moving and watch for tripping hazards.
- Do not drive into flooded areas—a vehicle can be quickly swept away.
- In the event of an evacuation, make sure to register at the reception centre.
- Keep disaster response routes clear.
3. EVACUATION RESCIND
When it is safe to do so, the City will notify the public and people under an Evacuation order may return. An Evacuation Order or Alert may be reinstated by the City of Chilliwack if the threat returns.