September is National Preparedness Month

Updated September 18, 2019

National Preparedness Month is recognized each September to promote family and community disaster and emergency planning now and throughout the year. Disasters can strike at any time without warning and natural disasters such as floods, fires, earthquakes, heat emergencies and windstorms affect thousands of people every year. 

Recognizing possible hazards that could affect your area and knowing what to do to protect yourself and your family will help you take the appropriate steps to prepare beforehand and assist you in recovery after the event. There are three steps to the preparedness process:

Get a Kit- An emergency kit is a container of items your family may need in or after an emergency. Most of the items can be found in your house. It is important to put them in one place. Be sure every family member knows where the kit is kept.

Make a Plan - Make a plan today. Your family may not be together if a disaster strikes, so it is important to know which types of disasters could affect your area.  Know how you’ll contact one another and reconnect if separated. Establish a family meeting place that’s familiar and easy to find.

Stay Informed- If we can’t reach you…we can’t alert you! 

All public safety agencies in Placer, Sacramento, and Yolo counties have partnered to have a state of the art community notification system to alert residents about emergency events and other important public safety information. This system enables us to provide you with critical information quickly in a variety of situations, such as severe weather, unexpected road closures, missing persons and evacuations of buildings or neighborhoods. Sign up today at www.placer-alert.org! Other sources for information during emergencies include the City website, Facebook, TwitterNextdoor and local media such as TV and radio. Remember that 9-1-1 is for reporting emergencies, not a tool for gaining information about what is going on.
 
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The threat of wildfire remains high on everyone’s mind with the recent fires that have devastated communities throughout California. Here are some of the many steps that the City of Roseville continues to take to reduce the risk of wildfire in our community.

Creating firebreaks and thatch control in open-space to reduce risk during fires.
Since the beginning of May, the 1,500 goats comprising two herds have grazed approximately 400 acres of open space in Roseville. 

The primary goal of grazing is to reduce the thatch but they also offer the added benefit of reducing potential fuel load in open-space grasslands and natural-resource areas. By the end of the year, more than 1,200 acres of open-space preserve areas will have been grazed.
 • We started mowing 30-foot firebreaks in April.
•  All state-mandated requirements for mowing fire breaks were met by July 1.
•  We’ve mowed 191 sites consisting of 300 acres of firebreaks or 193,000 linear feet.
•  Our staff have performed 195 quality-assurance inspections for firebreak mowing and responded with over 50 site visits to concerned residents in regards to fuel load.
• Roseville Electric Utility inspects its equipment in fire-sensitive areas to ensure that areas that may need extra vegetation trimming and increased clearance distance from utility equipment are addressed.

Safety is the focus at construction sites in new development areas. The construction activity on the west side of town is part of the Sierra Vista Specific Plan development area. The City and developers have taken numerous precautions in reducing the fire danger to residents during the underground construction phase of this project. Under the watchful eye of our engineering-inspection staff, these measures include:
• Removal of all field grass and debris from the construction limits before construction started.
• The conditions of the project require the contractor to park heavy equipment and personal vehicles on dirt and away from open spaces and wetlands. We have City inspection staff present every day to make sure this happens.
All heavy equipment is documented and permitted by the Placer County Air Pollution Control District for proper exhaust emissions and spark ar
restors.

Annual drills help staff prepare. While fires are at the top of everyone's mind right now, our staff prepares for a range of emergency scenarios every year. Twice a year we activate our Emergency Operations Center and spend the day working through potential logistical and communications challenges with staff from all departments to prepare for health and safety, transportation, shelter, and notification needs that vary with each type of emergency.

Some differences to note about Roseville’s construction and vegetation.
• The majority of Roseville’s growth has occurred since 1980, when higher structural and material standards were enacted. Older structures in other communities might have shake-shingle roofs and wood siding. Most Roseville homes are stucco with concrete tile roofs, a safety advantage in a fire.
• Most of the open space in Roseville comprises grasslands. Grasslands have a much lower fuel load than the forests that have been consumed by devastating fires in other California communities.
 

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