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Is Your Family Prepared for an Emergency? Family-friendly Fair Sept. 15 Can Help You Be Ready

Commissioners Court Proclaims September as Emergency Preparedness Month

Hays County, Partners, Celebrate Emergency Preparedness Month with Family-Friendly Fair September 15

Prizes, games, food, and local music will highlight the need for personal preparedness

Hays County Courthouse, San Marcos, TX – The Hays County Office of Emergency Services and numerous public safety-minded partners invite residents to learn more about all aspects of personal safety during September, which is National Emergency Preparedness Month. Multiple agencies will participate in a fair on Saturday, September 15, at the Hays CISD Performing Arts Center from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.

On Tuesday, the Hays County Commissioners Court proclaimed September as Emergency Preparedness Month in Hays County. Fire Marshal Clint Browning told the Court that it is the goal of all emergency planners and responders to reach out to Hays County families to help them prepare for the myriad emergencies they could face. He also noted that the drought index had reached over 700 on a scale that tops out at 800.

“We need citizens to be aware that the burn ban has been on since July 20,” Browning said. “We’ve had a number of fires recently caused by resident who were burning outdoors and were unaware of the burn ban. Always check before you decide to burn outdoors.” The ban status is located on the County website’s home page at and numerous other locations.

“Our Preparedness Fair is designed to help all our residents become familiar with the many aspects of personal safety that are so critical to our well-being,” Hays County OES Director Kharley Smith said. “From weather emergencies like floods and tornadoes to manmade ones, like hazardous material spills and active shooters, it helps us to know what to do and how to respond. We’re inviting everyone to stop by the Performing Arts Center to enjoy music from local bands, food, games, and short seminars on how you can be empowered to help yourself, your family, and others. Raffle proceeds will go to our own local area recovery organization, the Blanco River Recovery Team (BR3T), which has helped our communities recover from the 2015 floods, and more recently helped survivors of a horrendous apartment fire in San Marcos.”

Dozens of local emergency responders and response groups, non-profit agencies, and businesses will be on hand to meet with the public, and ground, water, and aerial response vehicle will be on display. Precinct 2 Commissioner Mark Jones will welcome attendees that morning.

One-hour seminars include:

Stop the Bleed (10 a.m. and 3 p.m.) Today we live in a world where terrorism, the actions of unstable people, and the dangerous impulses of friends and relatives are very real and becoming increasingly more frequent. Massive bleeding from any cause, but particularly from an active shooter or explosive event where a response is delayed can result in death. However, anyone at the scene can act as immediate responder and save lives if they know what to do.

CRASE – Civilian Response to Active Shooter Events (11 a.m.) This course, developed at the ALERRT (Advanced Law Enforcement Rapid Response Training) Center, teaches the Avoid, Deny, Defend (ADD) strategy for surviving an active shooter event. Learn what you should do to protect yourself and minimize your risk.

Firewise (1 p.m.) National Fire Protection Association’s (NFPA) Firewise USA® program teaches people how to adapt to living within the Wildland Urban Interface and encourages neighbors to proactively work together to prevent losses from wildfire events. We will discuss some simple steps that homeowners can take to reduce their risk of loss and provide information on how their neighborhood can become recognized as a Firewise community in cooperation with the Texas A&M Forest Service.

Standard Response Protocol – SRP (2 p.m.) Developed in 2013 by local public safety partners based on the I Love You Guys Foundation guidelines, the SRP is taught in every public and private school in Hays County and many businesses and government organizations. The program teaches standardized vocabulary – Lockout, Lockdown, Shelter, and Evacuate – and what each requires of the people involved in a dangerous situation, whether it be an active shooter, hazardous material spill, fire, or weather emergency.

Hays County