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Ready Marine Corps

Emergency Preparedness Program

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can start unexpectedly and spread quickly, often due to lightning strikes or accidents. You may not be aware of a wildfire until you are in danger, so it is important to be prepared for a wildfire, especially if you live in a dry, wooded area. Wildfires can be incredibly destructive and dangerous. They pose a threat not only to your home and community, but also to your family if you are not prepared.

140516-M-LD192-105 Photo By: Cpl. Sarah Wolff

How to Prepare for a Wildfire
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  • Verify and update official contact information in the Marine Corps Enterprise Mass Notification System (eMNS), and register all cell phones, home phone, email addresses, etc. in eMNS. 
  • Be aware of your area’s risk for wildfires.
  • Make an evacuation plan as a family.
  • Make an emergency communication plan in case family members are separated.
  • Build an emergency kit.
  • Install smoke detectors on every level of your home.
  • Never leaving a fire (including a cigarette) unattended.
  • Avoid open burning.
  • Keep a ladder that will reach the roof.
  • Make sure you have a fire extinguisher as well as a hose that can reach all areas of the home.


To create a 30-50 foot safety zone around your home:
  • Clear the area of all flammable vegetation, including dry leaves and branches. 
  • Remove vines from the side of your home.
  • Regularly dispose of trash at approved sites.
  • Store gasoline and oily rags in proper safety cans.
  • Regularly clean roof and gutters of debris.
  • Inspect chimneys at least twice a year.
What To Do When There Is A Wildfire
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  • Stay tuned to radio, TV, and eMNS alerts for information and instructions.
  • If you spot a wildfire, call 9-1-1 immediately. Don’t assume that someone has already reported it.
  • If directed to evacuate, do so immediately:
    • Turn off gas.
    • Fill any large containers with water, including pools, garbage cans, and tubs.
    • Close all the doors in your house to prevent a draft.
    • If time permits, clear the house and the area around it of any flammable items, including fire­wood and cloth curtains.
    • Take your emergency kit.
    • Wear protective clothing.
  • Once you are in a safe place, follow your command’s protocols for personnel accountability and contact your command’s designated Point of Contact to check-in and report your location and situation.
What To Do After A Wildfire
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  • Avoid damaged or fallen power lines, poles, and downed wires.
  • Wear leather gloves and heavy soled shoes to protect hands and feet.
  • Check the roof and attic for smoldering embers or fires.
  • Put out any fires with the water stored in containers.
  • Wet debris down to minimize breathing dust particles.
  • Do NOT use water that you think may be contaminated.
  • Maintain a fire watch for several hours, periodically checking for fires or smoke throughout and around the house.
  • If you evacuated, do not return home until Fire Marshals say it is safe to do so.

Set your own course through any hazard: stay informed, make a plan, build a kit.
Live Ready Marine Corps.

Where to Find Additional Information

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC)—   

Department of Homeland Security ( &


Downloadable PDF