Sonoma Valley’s Cavedale-Trinity community, identified as a high-risk area with limited access, will be the site of the County’s first evacuation drill.
The voluntary drill will take place on Saturday, August 24 from 8 to 10 a.m, and is part of a larger County effort to prepare for wildfires and other potential disasters.
Neighbors, community groups, local law enforcement and fire agencies, and the Department of Emergency Management are collaborating on the exercise.
“This drill is an example of our new culture of preparedness here in Sonoma County. said Sonoma County Board of Supervisors Chair David Rabbitt. “The neighbors worked with emergency managers to coordinate a drill that can result in faster and safer evacuations.”
The County is equipped to prevent and react to a major wildfire, Rabbit said. “We are recovering and rebuilding while staying vigilant and preparing for any disaster that may come our way.”
Residents wishing to participate in the exercise can sign up to receive an alert when the drill begins, and find more information here. They will then practice evacuating their homes and driving through evacuation routes to the Hanna Boys Center, at 17000 Arnold Drive. At the assembly site, the American Red Cross will distribute information and answer questions on disaster preparedness.
The Department of Emergency Management is identifying other high priority areas within the county, and will work with those communities to coordinate evacuation exercises. The high priority areas face a higher threat due to a number of variables, such as thick vegetation and limited access.
“From the challenges we faced during the catastrophic fires of 2017, we have learned how to better prepare for a disaster, and are asking Sonoma County residents to get involved,” said Chris Godley, director of Emergency Management, Sonoma County. “Preparedness only works if everyone participates – the County is committed to using every tool in our toolbox to deliver an emergency alert. Residents can do their part by being in contact with each other, signing up for SoCoAlert and practicing their evacuation routes.”
Find out more about emergency preparedness and sign up for alerts at www.SoCoEmergency.org