Evacuation Levels Explained

Share this page:

During an emergency, you might hear terms like pre-evacuation, voluntary evacuation, and mandatory evacuation. It's important for you to understand what these terms mean so you can take the appropriate action to keep you, your loved ones, and your pets safe. Also, make sure you've signed up for emergency alerts.

Below is an explanation of the evacuation levels. Remember, you don't have to wait for an evacuation notice to leave your home during an emergency. If you know or feel like you are in danger, get out right away. Do not wait for an evacuation order. 

Some emergencies escalate quickly, and your area may not always receive a pre-evacuation or voluntary evacuation notice before a mandatory evacuation order is given. Make sure you have your emergency kit ready and everyone in your household knows the emergency plan and has practiced it. 

Pre-Evacuation

Get your vehicle packed and ready to go. You may only have a few minutes to get out when an evacuation order is given. You do not need to wait for a mandatory evacuation order to leave. If you know or feel like you are in danger, get out right away. Do not wait for an evacuation order.

Voluntary Evacuation

You should be packed and ready to go. If you can leave now, you should go. If you have special circumstances, access and/or functional needs, or require additional time to evacuate, LEAVE NOW.

Mandatory Evacuation

LEAVE NOW. There is no time to gather belongings or pack your vehicle at this point. Get out now. If you are not at home, DO NOT GO BACK TO YOUR HOME.