Sooke mark Emergency Preparedness Week from May 1-7, with several events around the community. (File - Sooke News Mirror)

Nothing beats being prepared for an emergency, say officials

The District of Sooke is taking steps to provide peace of mind for residents in the event of an emergency.

Firefighters from Sooke Fire Rescue and district staff will be at the annual Duck Race at Sooke River Flats on Saturday (May 7) from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. to provide information and resources and answer questions as part of Emergency Preparedness Week.

Each visitor will get a ticket for a chance to win prizes that include a premium 72-hour earthquake kit valued at $38o, and a WASP Wildfire Sprinkler Protection Kit worth $165.

“Everyone has a role to play in an emergency,” Christina Moog, the district’s communications coordinator said in a media release. “Emergency Preparedness Week (May 1-7) is an opportunity to take action to ensure you are prepared to protect yourself, your family and your community during an emergency.”

Knowing the risks specific to Sooke, making a plan that outlines what you and your family should do, and having an emergency kit with enough basic supplies to stay self-sufficient for at least 72 hours are important steps to prepare for an emergency, Moog said.

Although Sooke has an excellent team of professional and volunteer emergency responders, it’s important that households are prepared for larger events such as lengthy power outages, said Deputy Fire Chief Matt Barney, director of the district’s Emergency program.

“It can take time to mobilize resources, so having an emergency kit to support needs for several days is important,” Barney said. “If you already have a kit, Emergency Preparedness Week is a good time to check your supplies.”

Another key during an emergency is having reliable information sources, such as those available through the district’s public notification system and the district’s website.

“As new information for residents is available, it will be shared through these channels first,” Barney said.

The district’s Emergency Support Services team and FireSmart coordinator will be at the Sooke Country Market on Saturday (May 28) for Sooke Wildfire Preparedness Day to answer questions and provide FireSmart resources. Sooke residents can also book a free FireSmart home assessment, have their kids participate in a FireSmart game, and have a chance to win some prizes.

A FireSmart information session on the threat of wildfires within the community is scheduled for Wednesday (May 18). from 7 to 8:30 p.m. Participants must sign up in advance at https://forms.office.com/r/1bmXjM1N4Xsessions.

Visit the Sooke Emergency Program’s Facebook page for more information.

Emergency Preparedness Week is a national initiative involving provincial and territorial emergency management organizations and Public Safety Canada. The theme for this year is Emergency Preparedness: Be Ready for Anything.

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editor@sookenewsmirror.com

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