Wildland Fire Evacuation Drill 2019

Category: Press Release
Lake Tahoe Squaw Valley Alpine Meadows Fire Evacuation Drill
 Wildland Fire Evacuation Drill at Squaw Valley and Alpine Meadows Sept. 8 and 21, Respectively

[Olympic Valley, Calif.] Aug 15, 2019 – In an effort to increase community wildfire preparedness, Squaw Valley Alpine Meadows will be hosting two community “area of refuge” evacuation drills in collaboration with Squaw Valley Fire Department, North Tahoe Fire Protection District, Placer County Sheriff, Alpine Meadows Fire Safe Council, and the residents of Olympic Valley and Alpine Meadows. The Olympic Valley drill will take place on Sept. 8, 10am – noon. The Alpine Meadows drill will take place on Sept. 21, 10am – noon. 

While the primary plans for wildfire in Squaw Valley and Alpine Meadows include evacuation from the area, these drills will simulate the limited scenario of a wildfire closing Highway 89 in both directions and moving toward Olympic Valley and Alpine Meadows. In such a scenario, existing community fire plans employ the ski resort parking lots as “areas of refuge.” For these drills, simulated evacuation orders will be sent though Nixle and Nextdoor, informing participating residents to evacuate to areas of refuge in either the Squaw Valley or Alpine Meadows parking lots. After the drill, Squaw Valley Fire along with North Tahoe Fire and Placer County Sheriff will be available to answer questions and provide additional fire related resources. Anyone is welcome to participate in the drills, and all local residents and homeowners are encouraged to participate in their respective valley. 

“Like most of California, wildfire is a real concern in our community,” said Kyle Crezee, Director of events, activities, security and parking at Squaw Valley Alpine Meadows and lead coordinator for the drills. “Hosting these drills gives us all a chance to practice, ask questions and continue improving our plans and processes. As a major tourism destination, we are fortunate to have infrastructure, personnel and resources to assist in the event of an emergency, but it is up to every individual in this community to be prepared. As with any true emergency, self-reliance may be critical and knowing what to do in the worst-case scenario may mean the difference between life and death.” 

To prepare for the drills and for true emergencies, residents and homeowners are asked to register for Nixle at http://www.nixle.com, and Nextdoor at http://www.nextdoor.com emergency alerts. Residents are also encouraged to sign up for Placer Alert at https://www.placer.ca.gov/2426/Placer-Alert. This system will be used in case of a real emergency.

Additional resources
• CalFire - Ready for Wildfire - https://www.readyforwildfire.org/
• CalOES Emergency Preparedness - https://www.caloes.ca.gov/individuals-families
• Wildland Fire Evacuation plan - https://www.svpsd.org/svfd/wildland-fire-evacuation-plan
• Emergency Preparedness and Evacuation guide - https://www.svpsd.org 
• Wildfire 2.0 - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dBhdv0iO8QE