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Solar Eclipse Safety Information

Overview

Oregon will be in the trajectory of a total solar eclipse on Monday, August 21, 2017 beginning around 10:15 a.m. Being the first total solar eclipse visible in the continental U.S. since 1979, this event is expected to draw upwards of one million visitors to the state, with most of the activity occurring along the forecasted path of totality.  This influx of people into small cities, rural areas, and along major transportation routes has the potential to create a number of challenges for emergency responders.

Safety Tips  

Safely view the solar eclipse
• Get to your viewing spot early and do not trespass on private property.
• Wear appropriate solar eclipse glasses.
• Do not view the eclipse while driving.
 
Travel tips
• Be prepared for prolonged travel times and heavy traffic.
• Fuel your vehicle early.
• For road conditions, call 511 or visit tripcheck.com.
• To report a roadside hazard, call 1-888-275-6368, option 1.
• Stay where you are and off the roads.
• Let people know where you are going.
 
Emergency preparedness
Plan ahead and come prepared for you and your family.
• Extra food and water for each family member and don’t forget your pets
• First aid kit
• Medications
• Emergency contact information
• Map of the area
• Cell phone and charger or extra battery
–– Cell phones may not work in remote areas or be reliable. During high usage periods, consider texting.
 
Wildfire prevention
• Know fire risks and respect fire restrictions, such as campfire bans.
• Avoid parking or driving on dry grass as your vehicle can start a wildfire.
• Vehicles are required to have a shovel and fire extinguisher or at least a gallon of water in many areas.
• Do not use candles, fireworks, tiki torches, or other open flames outdoors.
–– Sky lanterns are illegal in Oregon airspace.
• Smoking materials:
–– Dispose of smoking materials in deep, sturdy ashtrays.
–– Make sure butts and ashes are extinguished by using water or sand.
–– Never discard butts on the ground or in vegetation.
• During a wildfire, there are three levels of evacuation:
–– Level 1 – Ready: Pack your valuables.
–– Level 2 – Set: Monitor the news reports.
–– Level 3 – Go: An official notice from the sheriff’s office or fire agency to evacuate.
 
For more information on wildfire prevention and fire restrictions, visit
 
Campfire safety
Check to ensure if campfires are allowed.
• Keep a shovel and water nearby to extinguish any escaped embers.
• Select a site away from grasses, shrubs, overhanging branches, and stacked firewood.
–– Existing fire pits in established campgrounds are best.
• Scrape away leaves and litter to bare soil, at least 10 feet on all sides of the fire pit.
• Circle your campfire pit with rocks. Keep your campfire small and add wood in small amounts. Start your campfire with paper, cardboard, or manufactured fire starters. Don’t use gasoline.
• Never leave the campfire unattended.
–– Before going to bed or leaving the campsite, drown the fire with water, stir the coals, and drown again. Repeat until the fire is out and it is cool to the touch.
 
Hotel & motel safety
• When you enter your room, review the escape plan posted in your room. Ensure your room has a smoke detector.
• Take time to find the exits and count the number of doors between your room and the exit. Make sure the exits are unlocked. If they are locked, report it to hotel management right away.
• Keep your room key by your bed and take it with you if there is a fire.
• If the alarm sounds, leave right away, closing all doors behind you. Use the stairs — never use elevators during a fire.
• If you must escape through smoke, get low and go under the smoke to your exit.
• If you can’t escape:
–– Shut off fans and air conditioners.
–– Stuff wet towels in the crack around the door.
–– Call 911 and let them know your location.
–– Wait at the window and signal with a flashlight or light colored cloth.
 
For life-threatening emergencies, call 911. 7
 

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