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Sunday, June 27, 2010


Flood/Flash Flood Facts -
- Average of nearly 100 fatalities each year, nationwide.
- Number one cause of deaths associated with thunderstorms, nationwide.
- Nearly half of all flash flood fatalities are vehicle-related.
- Six inches of fast-moving water can knock you off your feet
- A water depth of two feet will cause most vehicles to float.


- If flooding occurs, move to higher ground, away from areas subject to flooding such as dips in roads, low spots, canyons, and washes.
- Avoid areas already flooded and do not attempt to cross flowing streams.
- Never drive through flooded roadways, as the roadbed under the flood-waters may be washed out.

Flash Flood Safety in Slot Canyons
- Become familiar with the terrain and know your escape routes.
- Be aware that deadly flash flood waters can travel from many miles away with travel times of 10 hours or more.
- Always let someone know your itinerary.
- Don't enter slot canyons and rugged terrain during stormy or wet weather.
- Don't attempt to cross floodwaters by vehicle or on foot.
- Don't camp along streams and sashes if there is a threat of flooding.

Information also in our Guide to Personal and Family Preparedness handout.

Friday, June 25, 2010


Local and state governments share the responsibility for protecting their citizens from disasters, and helping them recover when a disaster strikes. In some cases, a disaster is beyond the capabilities of the state and local government to respond. In these cases the governor may request assistance from the federal government. Before the governor requests federal assistance a FEMA/State Preliminary Damage Assessment is typically completed to determine if federal assistance is needed. Factors considered during this assessment include:

- Amount and type of damage (number of homes destroyed or with major damage).
- Impact on the infrastructure of the affected areas.
- Imminent threats to public health and safety.
- Level of insurance coverage in place for homeowners and public facilities.
- Assistance available from other sources (federal, state, local, and voluntary organizations).

Based on the governor's request, the president may declare that a major disaster or emergency exists and activate federal programs to assist in the response and recovery effort.

The Three Categories of FEMA Assistance

Individual Assistance- aid to individuals and households. This program provides money and services to people in the declared area whose property has been damaged or destroyed and whose losses are not covered by insurance. FEMA programs are designed to meet people's basic needs. People will find that the most common form of assistance is typically a loan from the U.S. Small Business Administration. Individual Assistance will not make disaster victims whole. Potential assistance includes:
- Temporary housing and repair to ensure a safe place to live.
- Disaster-related medical expenses.
- Funeral expenses.
- Replacement of some essential personal property.
- Transportation costs.
- Storage expenses.
- Other forms of assistance can include crisis counseling, legal services and Disaster Unemployment Assistance.

Public Assistance- aid to state and locally owned public facilities for eligible emergency services and the repair, restoration, reconstruction, or replacement of a public facilities or infrastructure damaged by the disaster. Certain private non-profit entities may also be eligible.

Hazard Mitigation Assistance - funding for measures designed to reduce future losses to public and private property. These funds are provided to the state, which determines what projects to fund.

This information is also found in our Guide to Personal and Family Preparedness handout.

Monday, June 21, 2010



ZONE 1: Home Ignition Zone.
This is the area that includes your home and grounds immediately surrounding it, and is the most critical zone to maintain. Remove ember traps by screening all eave and other vents; cleaning out debris from under decks, and screen or enclose these areas. Move stacks of firewood away from the structure. Remove pine needles, leaves and other debris from rooftops and rain gutters. Trim weeds or other flammable vegetation, especially tree branches, back from touching or overhanging the structure.

ZONE 2: The Defensible Space Zone:
This circular area is a minimum of 30 feet from your house, and 100 feet or more on the downhill side if you live at the top of a slope. Remove dead and dying grass, shrubs and trees. Reduce the density of vegetation, by spacing plants apart, and remove "ladder" fuels that could carry fire from the ground into the treetops. Replace flammable vegetation with fire-resistant plants, green lawn, or other low-growing ground covers.

ZONE 3: Fuel Reduction Zone:
Remove undergrowth and thin out densely crowded smaller trees to reduce fire intensity. Experts recommend keeping a minimum of 10 feet of space between trees and shrubs. Trim low-hanging branches of mature trees up to six to ten feet off the ground.

Information also found in BRU Guide to Family Preparedness Handout.

Thursday, June 17, 2010


A leading cause of home loss is flying embers, which can travel a half mile or more from the active fire...

Survival in a Vehicle

Roll up windows and close air vents. Drive slowly with headlights on. Do not drive through heavy smoke. If you have to stop, park away from the heaviest trees and brush. Turn headlights on and ignition off. Get on the floor and cover up with a blanket or coat. Park in an area clear of all fuel; never park on dry grass.


Throughout Utah wildland/urban interface fires are becoming more of a problem as people choose to live in previously undeveloped areas on the edges of cities, areas with trees, shrubs, and grasses that often are very flammable.

Firewise landscaping is the practice of designing, installing, and maintaining a landscape to minimize fire hazard to structures, residents, and neighbors, while maintaining components of the native ecosystems that attracted people to live in such areas in the first place. For a full list of Firewise plants, their descriptions and pictures to help you identify them, visit the Firewise website at WWW.FIREWISE.ORG


Although wildfires are not an actual weather phenomenon, wildfires are directly related to lightning and other weather elements. The wildfire threat typically increases in early to mid June across southern Utah and by early July across the northern sections of the state and remains high through Labor Day.

Utah averages about 1,900 wildfires each year. About two thirds of all wildfires in the Eastern Great Basin are ignited by lightning.

During periods of extreme fire danger in forest and rangelands: Avoid putting yourself in areas where you might become trapped by a wildfire. Do not use matches of anything else that could ignite a fire. Make sure that hot parts of motorized vehicles such as mufflers are not allowed to come in contact with dry grasses or other potentially flammable material.

Information also found in the BRU Guide to Family Preparedness Handout.

Monday, June 14, 2010


1. Anti-diarrheal such as Pepto-Bismol (1/2 tab or 2 tsp for 15 lbs dogs, 1/4 tab or 1 tsp for 15 lbs in cats.
2. Antibiotic ointment such as Neosporin or triple antibiotic.
3. Antibiotic eye ointment.
4. Sterile saline eyewash.
5. Disinfectant surgical scrub and solution.
6. Cotton tipped swabs.
7. Guaze squares.
8. Guaze Roll.
9. Non-adherent sterile dressing.
10. Bandage scissors.
11. Latex gloves.
12. Sterile lubricant.
13. Vet wrap or similar.
14. Large padded bandages, or sanitary napkins.
15. Clean rags, towels, and sheets.
16. Syringes of several sizes.
17. Thermometer
18. Tweezers, and/or mosquito hemostats.
19. Mineral Oil.
20. Pet appropriate pain medication.

Information also found in the BRU Guide to Family Preparedness Handout.

Saturday, June 12, 2010


Plan Ahead and Know How to Respond

Horses, companion and production livestock should not be turned loose or locked in a barn during an emergency. A large fenced area is the best way to protect your animals in a disaster involving extreme weather events.

Always have a week's supply of food on hand and covered. Maintain a contact list for alternate suppliers.

Have an emergency source of water at hand or near by in the event that services are temporarily disrupted. Membership in growers or producers organizations that can provide assistance in an emergency will reduce losses.

Have transportation to evacuate. Remember that borrowing from a neighbor may not be feasible. When possible, move stock out of flood or fire zones in advance; provide extra feed in severe weather events.

Have current health/vaccination records, proof of ownership and brand inspectors and extension agents.

Identify nearby and distant evacuation sites including boarding facilities, fairgrounds, arenas, etc.

Always keep a first aid kit in your truck or trailer.

Information also found in the BRU Guide to Family Preparedness Handout.