July 23, 2009
A continued drought, 500,000 acres of aged unburned brush throughout the County, and cutbacks in fire service have put us all on high alert. Beginning Saturday, July 25, from one end of the County to the other, 400,000 “Before The Threat” DVD prevention and preparedness packages will be delivered door-to-door in the County’s high-risk urban interface areas.
Teams of first responders from 55 fire agencies and as many as 3,000 volunteers will rally at Qualcomm Stadium Saturday before fanning out to neighborhoods to deliver the packages.
“The fires of 2003 and 2007 will never allow us to forget the importance of a well-prepared, well-educated community,” said Augie Ghio, President of the San Diego County Fire Chiefs Association. “After reviewing the Before The Threat preparedness package, residents will have a better understanding of what to do before, during and after a wildfire.”
This first-time regional effort is made possible through a $200,000 grant from the Farmers Insurance Group.
“Farmers Insurance is proud to be a supporter of the San Diego County Office of Emergency Services and the San Diego County Fire Chiefs Association,” said Steve Feely, Farmers Senior Vice President of State Operations and a San Diego resident. “We know this program will save lives and property in San Diego County and working together, we can all make a difference.”
Campaign organizers plan to have the packages delivered by early August.
“The County urges residents to take the time to view the DVD and accompanying materials and then make a plan to get prepared before the next big wildfire,” said Ron Lane, Director of the Office of Emergency Services. “A fire‐prepared region starts at the individual level and builds to the community level.”
Volunteer San Diego is also joining the partnership by helping to organize the massive number of volunteers this project will depend on. County residents interested in donating their time to the effort should contact their local fire agency or Volunteer San Diego.
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