Wildfire Preparedness is Year-Round: In May, Get to Know Ready, Set, Go!

With the start of the 2023 wildfire season in New Mexico and Wildfire Community Preparedness Day on Saturday May 6th, it is vital to have an emergency kit and an evacuation plan in place for you and your family. The 2023 Wildfire Preparedness is Year-Round campaign that provides monthly wildfire preparedness tasks that follow the changing seasons. The May message from NM wildland fire partners, agencies and non-governmental organizations is, “Get to know Ready, Set, Go!.”

Whether you live in the wildland-urban interface or in a rural area in the mountains, communication is key during wildfire season. Be sure to register with your local government’s emergency management office for text or email notifications and connect with your county or city’s social media. The Ready, Set, Go! New Mexico program provides tips and tools to prepare for a wildfire emergency and create a personal action plan.

Ready – Get Ready

  • Create a family disaster plan that includes meeting locations and communication plans and rehearse it regularly. Include the evacuation of large animals, such as horses, in your plan.
  • Put together an emergency supply kit or go-bag. The NM Department of Homeland Security and Emergency Management’s Preparedness Guide is a good resource for items to include. Keep an extra kit in your vehicle. Don’t forget important family documents like birth certificates, wills, deeds and insurance policies.

Set – Be Prepared to Go · Monitor fire weather conditions and fire status. See inciweb.nwcg.gov and nmfireinfo.com. Stay tuned to local TV and radio stations for updates and check official information sources on the internet.

  • Have an evacuation plan for your family and pets in place, and make sure all family members have a copy of evacuation and contact information.
  • Load your supplies and go-bags in your vehicle.

Go – Act Early, Evacuate

  • Do not wait to be advised to leave if there is a possible threat to your home or evacuation route. Leave early enough to avoid being caught in fire, smoke or road congestion. If you are advised to leave by local authorities, do not hesitate. If you don’t follow the Go order, understand that emergency services may not be able to assist you.
  • Head to a predetermined location in a low-risk area, such as a relative’s house, Red Cross shelter or evacuation center, motel or school. Identify several routes in case your first choice is closed due to the fire. Other helpful resources include the Ready, Set, Go! Program (video), Living with Fire: A Guide for the Homeowner, New Mexico, and Firewise USA®.

Partners in the 2023 Wildfire Preparedness Campaign are the Forest Stewards Guild, Fire Adapted NM learning network, New Mexico Forestry Division, New Mexico Coalition of Conservation Districts, National Park Service, Bureau of Indian Affairs, Bureau of Land Management New Mexico, the Carson and Santa Fe National Forests and the Cibola National Forest and National Grasslands. Bookmark the wildfire preparedness webpage to follow the campaign throughout the year.

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