When evacuation to shelters is either inappropriate or impossible, you may be asked to stay where you are. This could be something as simple as just staying in your home or place of employment, while officials clear a hazard, or it could require more active steps, taken during emergencies involving contaminated air.

Identify a room with the fewest doors and windows to shelter in place. Try to provide at least 10 square feet per person.

When officials ask you to shelter in place, act quickly and follow the instructions. Your highest priority is to get to a safe indoor location. You most likely will be in your “safe room” for no more than a few hours. Once inside:

  • If there is time, close and lock all windows and doors, close fireplace dampers.
  • Turn off ventilation systems. (Furnaces, Air Conditioners, Exchangers).
  • Make sure you have an Emergency Supply Kit and your Go Bag.
  • Tune in to local radio or TV stations to receive updates from emergency officials. Another good resource for emergency information is the NOAA weather radio. Cavalier County could use this for information in an emergency.
  • Only seal windows and doors when instructed to do so.
  • If your children are at school, do not pick them up until all danger has passed and shelter in place orders have been lifted. You will only endanger yourself and your child by leaving a safe area during an emergency.
  • Snugly cover your nose and mouth with a face mask, available in any hardware store (an N95 rating is best)
  • Make the best fit possible for both children and adults to ensure that air comes through the mask or cloth and not around it
  • It is also important to protect your eyes and cuts in your skin
  • You may need to improvise with anything that fits your face snugly, such as dense-weave cotton material
  • Something over your nose and mouth in an emergency is better than nothing