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Yes, the Orange County Sheriff Department's Emergency Management Division is available to do presentations on disaster preparedness for local groups and organizations. To arrange, please call (714) 628-7054.

We also encourage you to contact your city's Emergency Manager for a presentation specific to your local community's disaster planning and preparedness.

Traditionally, recommendations have centered on maintaining supplies to meet your and your family’s needs for 72-hours. However, depending upon the scope of the disaster, organizations, like the American Red Cross, have begun to recommend a 3-day supply for evacuation and a 2-week supply for home. You may also have special considerations if you have children, elderly, family members with access and/or functional needs, or pets. Possible sources of detailed supply lists are available through:

In some situations evacuation is the only protective action available. If you are advised to evacuate, first consider going to the homes of relatives or friends, or checking into a hotel or motel outside the danger area. If these locations are not feasible then you will need to go to a shelter site, but remember that most shelter sites will not allow pets to be brought in due to health, safety and space reasons. If special accommodations are required, the shelter will instruct you as to where to take your pets.

If instructed to evacuate:

  • Stay calm - don't panic.
  • Take only essential emergency supplies with you.
  • Do not go to pick up children at school. They will be taken care of at school or taken to a shelter outside the affected area. Listen to local radio or TV stations, they will have information on where to pick up your children and shelter locations.
  • Unless you are planning to stay with friends or family, leave your pets and other animals at home. Be sure to put out plenty of water and food for your animals before you leave.
  • Turn off all lights and appliances (including the hot water heater) with the exception of the refrigerator and freezer.
  • Secure windows and doors and tie a white cloth or white towel to your front door as an indicator that you have evacuated (this will save emergency responders time when searching for victims or fatalities).
  • Follow the recommended routes. Do not take shortcuts.
  • Notify a family contact person of your location.
  • Stay tuned to your local radio stations for updates.
  • Do not return home until advised to do so.

In certain situations when an emergency occurs so quickly that there is insufficient time to evacuate, or an evacuation would actually place more people in danger, it is necessary to "Shelter in Place." If this happens, immediately go inside your home or the nearest structure (if you are at work or away from you home). If you have a pet, get it inside too.

If instructed to shelter in place:

  • Secure all doors and windows (if tape is available, tape cracks for extra protection).
  • Shut off all air conditioners, window fans or other equipment with air intakes.
  • Cover food and put uncovered food in the refrigerator.
  • Move to a center room or central area of the structure (keep water and emergency supplies with you).
  • Keep your TV or radio on and turned onto the Emergency Broadcasting Station (or local stations).
  • Do not use the telephone except for an extreme emergency.
  • Do not leave your home (or the structure) until you are told it is safe to do so.
  • If you're in an automobile, roll the windows up, close all vents, turn off the fan and leave the area immediately.

No, each incorporated city is responsible for their own emergency management issues. Hazards can be different in each city depending on location and other issues. Residents should contact their city hall to get in touch with the appropriate person. The Orange County Sheriff’s Department Emergency Management Division provides these services to unincorporated Orange County and supports the efforts of the other cities.