Citizen Emergency

What to do in the event of a HazMat release.

Emergency Procedure

If requested to evacuate:

  • Do so immediately
  • Stay tuned to a radio or television for information on evacuation routes, temporary shelters, and procedures.
  • Follow the routes recommended by the authorities-shortcuts may not be safe.
  • Take pre-assembled disaster supplies.
  • Remember to help your neighbors who may require special assistance-infants, elderly people, and people with disabilities.


If requested to stay indoors:

  • Bring pets inside.
  • Close and lock all exterior doors and windows.  Close vents, fireplace dampers, and as many interior doors as possible.
  • Turn off air conditioners and ventilation systems.
  • Go into the pre-selected shelter room.  This room should be above ground and have the fewest openings to the outside.
  • Seal gaps under doorways and windows with wet towels or plastic sheeting and duct tape.
  • Seal gaps around window and air conditioning units, bathroom and kitchen exhaust fans, and stove and dryer vents with duct tape and plastic sheeting, wax paper or aluminum wrap.
  • Use material to fill cracks and holes in the room, such as those around pipes.
  • If gas or vapors could have entered the building, take shallow breaths through a cloth or a towel.  Avoid eating and drinking any food or water that may be contaminated.


Additional Information from FEMA on HazMat Release