Cal Fire encourages SLO County residents to be prepared for wildfires with 6 P’s

Posted at 5:11 PM, Jul 29, 2018
and last updated 2018-07-29 20:11:58-04

When wildfires break out, residents of the affected community could have just minutes to escape, which is why Cal Fire wants to remind people to have their most important belongings ready to go.

"In an emergency situation, it’s easy to become confused or panicked but having an evacuation plan can speed up the process and allow you to get out fast without forgetting your important things," Cal Fire Public Information Officer Chris Elms said.

Elms said the top priority items can be remembered with the six P’s: people and pets, important papers, prescriptions, pictures and irreplaceable memorabilia, personal computer and plastics, like credit cards and IDs.

A quick check of people out for lunch in Downtown San Luis Obispo on Sunday revealed other priorities.

"The first thing I would grab are a travel journal from a trip that I went on," L.A. resident, Kearci, said.

Chad Hoffman, a San Luis Obispo resident, said he’d be sure to grab his pet, but also his instrument.

"(I’d take) my upright base," Hoffman said. "Music is a sense of meditation for me and I have fun and it makes other people smile."

Faced with losing it all, everyone has belongings they couldn’t leave behind.

"(I’d take) all our wedding memorabilia," Ventura County resident, Stephanie Gray, said.

Gray said the items in her go bag aren’t just on her mind, they’re packed and ready.

"We already have them prepared and bundled," Gray said. "We went through two wildfires last year."

Cameron Goldston, a Cuesta College student, said he’s well versed on the Ready, Set, Go! plan because his father is a firefighter.

"For us, it’s basically leave everything at home. just make sure your sisters get out alive," Goldston said.

Elms said the prospect of fire may seem far away for some people who live in less fire prone areas, but reminded doubters of the countless times wildfires have crept unexpectedly into largely populated cities.

"The environment we live in nowadays in California, everyone should have a plan," Elms said. "What we’re seeing in Redding right now is a major city being evacuated because of a wildfire. We’re all vulnerable so everyone needs to have a plan in place."

A plan could mean the difference between life and death, Elms said.

"A couple minutes could save your life," Elms said. "Having a plan in place for when this situation arises could save your life."