Safety first when returning home from evacuation, Shasta County officials say

As a matter of safety and precaution the Shasta County Emergency Operations Center has just alerted us - to remind the public of safety issues of returning to evacuation zones.

Posted: Jul. 28, 2018 11:34 PM

As a matter of safety and precaution the Shasta County Emergency Operations Center has just alerted us - to remind the public of safety issues of returning to evacuation zones.

For residents allowed to return to their neighborhoods - be sure to do the following:

Getting home:
• Have your ID or proof of residency handy for traffic control points.
• Use caution on the roadways. Congestion from fire and responder personnel in these areas.
If your property was affected by the fire:
• Check grounds for hot spots, smoldering stumps, and vegetation.
• Before inspecting your home, first check for the smell of gas. Turn off power until you’ve completed your inspection. Use a battery-powered flashlight to inspect a damaged home.
• Check for fire damage to your home, turn off all appliances and make sure the meter is not damaged before turning on the main circuit breaker.
• Check the roof and exterior areas for sparks or embers.
• Be aware of and use extreme caution around trees, power poles, and other tall objects or structures that may have lost stability during the fire. Most burned structures and surfaces will be unstable. Do not touch any power lines.
Even if fire did not directly impact your property, utilities may have been shut off:
• Discard any and all food that requires refrigeration if the electricity has been off. Food can spoil in less than 2 hours without refrigeration. Discard all frozen food if your power has been off. Food is unsafe if it thawed and refroze.
• Discard any food that has been exposed to heat, smoke, fire retardant and foam or other chemicals.
• If there is no power, check to make sure the main breaker is on. If the breakers are on and power is still not present, contact the utility company.
• If you have a well for water supply:
• Check the well or pump-house to ensure it is in working order.
• If your well has been damaged by fire, contact a local licensed and bonded well constructor or pump installer to determine the extent of the damage and what must be done to either repair or decommission the well.
• If you have a propane tank or system, contact your propane supplier, turn off valves on the system, and leave valves closed until the supplier inspects your system.
• If you have a solar electrical system, this system should be inspected by a licensed technician to verify that the solar panels and electrical wiring are safe for continued operation.

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