Emergency Preparedness / Stages of Evacuation & Sheltering in Place

There are three stages to an evacuation:

  1. Evacuation Alert
  2. Evacuation Order
  3. Evacuation Rescind

*An Evacuation Alert may not be issued before an Evacuation Order if the threat is urgent and time is limited.

Evacuation Alert

The Regional District will issue an Evacuation Alert as a warning of an imminent threat to life and/or property. Begin preparing to leave your property, have your 72 hour kit ready and monitor local media for updates on the situation. If you have domesticate pets, ensure they also have a 72 hour kit and make prior arrangements for where they can board as not all lodging allows pets. Maintain a level of readiness to leave your property in a short time up until the time you receive the Order for Evacuation or a Rescind of Alert. 

Evacuation Order

The Regional District will issue an Evacuation Order. Upon receiving this Order, leave your property immediately with your 72 hour kit. The Order will inform you of the reception centre location to register you and your family. If possible, monitor local media for updates on the way the reception centre.

Once an Evacuation Order is issued, any children under the age of 18 can be removed from a property if the adults choose not to leave. If you choose not to leave, first responders will not return to assist you should you change your mind. Responder safety will not be put at risk for those who did not leave when it was still safe to do so.

Evacuation Rescind

Once the threat has passed, the Regional District will issue a Rescind Notice informing residents it is safe to return to their properties. However should conditions change, another Evacuation Alert or Order may be issued. Monitor local media for up to date information on the situation. 

Sheltering in Place

A Shelter in Place Order will be issued if the Regional District decides it is unsafe for residents to leave their properties. This could be because of storms closing roads or power outages. In more serious cases, it could be due to toxic gas spills that could cause serious injury to your health.

shelter_in_place.jpgWith a Shelter in Place Order, your emergency kit supplies will still be needed as well as extra measures to be taken to protect yourself from toxic gases, such as turning off ventilation systems, sealing windows and doors with thick plastic and duct tape. 

  • go indoors and stay there, away from windows and doors
  • close all windows, outside doors and every door inside the building
  • do not use kitchen or bathroom vents
  • set thermostats so air conditioners, furnaces and hot water heaters will not come on
  • do not use fireplaces and close all dampers
  • do not operate the clothes dryer
  • reduce or avoid smoking as it contaminates the air
  • do not leave the building until told to
  • monitor local media for information

*An Evacuation Order may be issued after a Shelter in Place Order to enable clean-up or if the danger transforms.