The local Chemical Stockpile Emergency Preparedness Program (CSEPP) is reminding everyone to prepare pets for evacuation through a campaign targeting evacuation plans and preparedness for your furry and feathered family members.
“During September, as part of National Preparedness Month, we wanted to remind pet owners of the importance of having an emergency plan,” expressed Laurie Kilpatrick, CSEPP public information officer. “We are encouraging individuals to develop a plan for their entire family, including pets.”
Kilpatrick said as the Pueblo Chemical Agent-Destruction Pilot Plant moves closer to operations, residents who live near the U.S. Army Pueblo Chemical Depot, including pet owners, should have a plan in the unlikely event of a chemical incident at the plant.
“Many horse owners have an evacuation plan, but when it comes to dogs, cats and birds, owners have not thought about how they would care for their animals in an emergency,” Kilpatrick noted. The campaign also targeted non-traditional pets such as llamas, goats, rabbits and chickens. Kilpatrick said more than 600 animals were evacuated during the 2013 Black Forest Fire, the most destructive fire in Colorado’s history.
Kilpatrick said the website Ready.gov encourages pet owners to build a pet kit of emergency supplies, consisting of three days of food and water, medications and medical records, first aid supplies, a collar with an identification tag and leash, vaccination and registration records, a pet carrier, a picture of the owner and pet together, and bedding.
CSEPP was conceived to provide maximum protection to the communities near chemical stockpiles. The purpose of the program is to improve the emergency response capabilities of the communities surrounding the stockpiles. CSEPP uses radio and newspaper advertisements, billboards, commercials, flyers, brochures and email distributions to inform communities. More information can be found at PreparePueblo.com or PuebloSheriff.com.