SAN DIEGO — San Diego Gas & Electric hosted a public safety fair in Valley Center Saturday to discuss wildfire safety, emergency preparedness, potential power shutoffs to preemptively avoid starting fires and what the company is doing to increase public safety in areas of the county at risk for wildfires. 

The fair was a chance for attendees to hear from experts on evacuation plans, escape routes, and protecting your home and loved ones in advance. 

Across San Diego, we have seen fire devastation first-hand too many times. The Cedar Fire killed 15 people and burned over a quarter-million acres in 2003. 7 died in the Witch Creek, Guejito and Harris fires in 2007.   

As every few years disaster strikes, authorities want locals to heed their advice. They recommend getting defensive space on properties under control and out 100 feet.  

"Get mulch away from houses and replace it with rocks so embers don't start fires,” said Chief Joe Napier with the Valley Center Fire Protection District.  

Communication is important, too. The American Red Cross coordinates notifications so you can find out who is safe and where. 

Authorities also say you need to plan for the safety of your pets and livestock. 

"[You] want to have a way to give them water, food," said Sarah Fischer, an animal service volunteer. “[You’ll want] crates to put them in if it’s a small animal.”  

SDG&E has two more upcoming public safety fairs. See below for details: 

Ramona Community Center
434 Aqua Lane, Ramona, 92065
Saturday, August 24 from 10 a.m. - 2:30 p.m.

Alpine Community Center
1830 Alpine Blvd., Alpine, 91901
Saturday, September 14 from 10 a.m. - 2:30 p.m.