Pre-Disaster Mitigation Plan Update

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Find the pre-disaster mitigation draft plan in the "documents" section on the right-hand side.

From wildfires and blizzards to floods and drought, Missoula County experiences its share of hazards. The Office of Emergency Management is updating the local Pre-Disaster Mitigation Plan to better help the County and its residents prepare for and mitigate potential disasters. Staff started with a survey to better inform our planning process about the hazards that concern you most. You can see some of the "Selected Results" and the draft pre-disaster mitigation plan in the "documents" section on the right-hand side.

Staff have preliminarily provided explanations to some of the top responses in the survey in the "News Feed" section below. They also hosted a pre-disaster planning meeting on June 21, and the draft pre-disaster mitigation plan was open for comment until Dec. 7. Mitigation strategies are wide-ranging and include everything from elevating or removing existing infrastructure from flood-prone areas to educating residents on how to prepare their homes for a disaster.

The pre-disaster plan, a federal requirement that’s updated every five years, goes through a detailed process of analyzing, ranking and profiling all natural hazards in a geographic area. Through this analysis, Missoula County and City can gain a better understanding of the probability of certain natural disasters and the impacts of past disasters. This analysis helps local government and the public better understand not only what is most likely to occur, but also what potential impacts those disasters could have on critical infrastructure, private property and our communities. The most important component of the Pre-Disaster Mitigation Plan is developing mitigation strategies that aim to minimize the impacts of these disasters.

The draft plan was open for public review until Dec. 7. The Missoula County commissioners approved the plan on Feb. 22 pending FEMA's final edits. After FEMA's revisions, the next and final step is for the Missoula City Council to review and approve the plan.

Find the pre-disaster mitigation draft plan in the "documents" section on the right-hand side.

From wildfires and blizzards to floods and drought, Missoula County experiences its share of hazards. The Office of Emergency Management is updating the local Pre-Disaster Mitigation Plan to better help the County and its residents prepare for and mitigate potential disasters. Staff started with a survey to better inform our planning process about the hazards that concern you most. You can see some of the "Selected Results" and the draft pre-disaster mitigation plan in the "documents" section on the right-hand side.

Staff have preliminarily provided explanations to some of the top responses in the survey in the "News Feed" section below. They also hosted a pre-disaster planning meeting on June 21, and the draft pre-disaster mitigation plan was open for comment until Dec. 7. Mitigation strategies are wide-ranging and include everything from elevating or removing existing infrastructure from flood-prone areas to educating residents on how to prepare their homes for a disaster.

The pre-disaster plan, a federal requirement that’s updated every five years, goes through a detailed process of analyzing, ranking and profiling all natural hazards in a geographic area. Through this analysis, Missoula County and City can gain a better understanding of the probability of certain natural disasters and the impacts of past disasters. This analysis helps local government and the public better understand not only what is most likely to occur, but also what potential impacts those disasters could have on critical infrastructure, private property and our communities. The most important component of the Pre-Disaster Mitigation Plan is developing mitigation strategies that aim to minimize the impacts of these disasters.

The draft plan was open for public review until Dec. 7. The Missoula County commissioners approved the plan on Feb. 22 pending FEMA's final edits. After FEMA's revisions, the next and final step is for the Missoula City Council to review and approve the plan.

  • Missoula County commissioners approve pre-disaster mitigation plan

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    Missoula County commissioners on Feb. 22 approved the pre-disaster mitigation plan pending the Federal Emergency Management Agency's final edits. Following FEMA's final revisions, the plan will go before the Missoula City Council for final approval.

  • Survey Results

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    Click here to see selected survey results.

    Wildfire

    The 2023 Pre-Disaster Mitigation survey results showed that wildfire is perceived as one of the most likely hazards to threaten a household, and that residents expect County agencies to emphasize wildfire mitigation. Missoula County’s Office of Emergency Management has a Wildfire Preparedness Coordinator, Max Rebholz, who you can contact at mrebholz@missoulacounty.us, as well as several resources to better prepare Missoula County residents for wildfire. Learn more on the Missoula County Office of Emergency Management’s website.

    How to Receive Emergency Information

    The survey showed most people hear about emergencies from local government sites, web searches or social media. There were also many who hear about them from state and federal government sites and word of mouth. However, one of the best ways to get information about an emergency is to download the Smart911 app, also referred to as the Rave Mobile Safety app.

    To receive emergency alerts on your cell phone, you must opt-in on Smart911. If your household does not have a landline, opting in to cellphone alerts is the best way to receive emergency alerts in your area. Sign up at www.smart911.com

    This app is free and recommended for all Missoula County residents. It sends emergency notifications through texts, phone calls and email using Smart911. Alerts are targeted only to those in specific areas or groups who need them and are mostly used for evacuation notices due to fire or flooding and for missing persons and armed suspects in a particular neighborhood.

    How to Prepare for Emergencies

    One of the best things you can do to prepare for emergencies, in general, is to create an emergency plan for you and your household. Visit the Missoula County Office of Emergency Management website to learn how you can create an emergency plan for you and your family.

    The survey showed that around 46% of people would be prepared to shelter in place for up to three days. If you’re one of those who would not be prepared to shelter in place, visit FEMA’s Ready.gov site for a list of things you can do to prepare yourself.

    The survey also showed that around 49% of people asked to evacuate would do so as instructed. Those who might feel hesitant from leaving their place of residence listed their pets or because they have no other place to go as their top reasons for not evacuating.

    If you are nervous about evacuating because of your pet situation, eliminate that stress by planning ahead. Just like you’d have an emergency plan and kit for you and your children, develop one for your pet. Think ahead about where you can take your pets if an emergency happens and have a kit ready to go with their basics for survival. Even better, have two kits: a larger one for if you need to shelter in place and a lightweight one for if you need to evacuate.

    Learn more on the Ready.gov site

    If you are worried about evacuating because you don’t know where you’d go, don’t worry. In these cases, the Office of Emergency Management will help you and set up a public shelter where people can get their basic needs met, such as food, water and a warm sleeping space.

    For all other questions related to evacuation, learn more on the Federal Emergency Management Agency’s Ready.gov website.

  • Pre-Disaster Mitigation Plan Survey

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    The pre-disaster mitigation plan survey has closed and staff are compiling results. Stay tuned for future engagement opportunities!

    Survey results will be compiled and shared with the planning team, and they will be made available to the public as we begin to rank and profile hazards that are of most concern. Public input is critical because your engagement will help prioritize mitigation strategies for the future.

Page last updated: 25 Apr 2024, 03:08 PM