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Thurston County, Washington

The content on the Thurston County website is currently provided in English. We are providing the “Translation” for approximately 10 languages. The goal of the translation is to provide visitors with limited English proficiency to access information on the website in other languages. The translations do not translate all types of documents, and it may not give you an exact translation all the time. The translations are made through an automated process, which may not result in accurate or precise translations, particularly of technical and legal terminology.

Public Health and Social Services

Preparedness and Response

Thurston County Public Health and Social Services prepares to respond quickly to protect you and your family from potential health hazards during an emergency or disaster.

The Emergency Preparedness and Response Team leads the Department's efforts to prepare for and respond to public health emergencies in Thurston County.

Actions include:  

  • Emergency Response Plan to coordinate department emergency response efforts and community partner coordination

  • Identify and mitigate health risks and disparities that may put residents at significant risk during an emergency     

  • Providing health information and updates to the community during an emergency  

  • Working with local, state, and federal partners during an emergency response  

In the event of a Public Health emergency, the Department communicates with the public through local media, this website, social media and an established 24-hour telephone information line. 

Public Health responders in drive through immunization tent during COVID-19 response.


If you have an interest in helping during Public Health emergencies, please consider joining our  Medical Reserve Corps

Emergency Response Plan

The Public Health Emergency Response Plan provides coordination and response operations during public health emergencies. The plan defines the roles and responsibilities of staff and volunteers and details preparedness planning, response, recovery, and mitigation operations. The plan is coordinated with other emergency response organizations in Thurston County and their respective emergency plans. The Emergency Response plan also provides a link to regional and state emergency plans.

Family Disaster Preparedness

Being ready for a disaster does not have to be expensive or time consuming. There are lower cost things that you can do to be more prepared. Emergencies do happen in Thurston County, taking a few precautions is a good idea. 

Start by putting together a basic disaster kit. (Ready.Gov) 

Preparedness for Families (Ready.Gov) 

Preparedness for People with Pets (Ready.Gov) 

Families with young children can be better prepared by setting aside a three-day supply of the following:

Medicine or medical supplies that cannot wait. Pharmacies and stores may be closed for a long time or out of the things you need.

Extra food that does not need to go in the refrigerator. This could mean formula, baby food, powdered milk, snacks, canned foods, or cereal.  The power could be out for days.

Preparedness for Kids (Ready.Gov) 

Fun Preparedness Activities for Kids (Ready.Gov) 

Some groups of people are less likely than others to be ready for a disaster. Those who are often less prepared include residents who:

  • Do not have supplies that may be needed in a disaster. 
  • Have unique medical needs or special health conditions. 

Families with children are considered a high risk population which means they are more likely to experience hardship, even disability and death, from a disaster when compared to others. 

Storm & Flood Information

Contact your waste hauler to schedule a special bulk item pickup or haul them yourself to one of Thurston County’s solid waste facilities. Vehicles with mechanized dump beds/trailers must use the Waste and Recovery Center in Lacey.

Washing machines, dryers, ovens, etc. are accepted at any of the county’s three solid waste facilities. Refrigerated appliances (refrigerators, freezers, water coolers, dehumidifiers, etc.) are only accepted at the Waste and Recovery Center and a special handling fee applies.

Take pesticides, fertilizers, fuel, motor oil, cleaners, and other household hazardous wastes to HazoHouse in Lacey. This service is free for Thurston County residents. Businesses (or residents with large volumes) should contact the Department of Ecology Regional Spills Response Program.

Winter Storm and Emergency Response page from Public Works

Emergency Advisories & Information

Bad Weather: Be Prepared, Be Safe (WA DOH)

Purify Household Water (WA DOH) 

Thurston County Development in Flood Hazard Areas (County Development Regulations for Flood Hazard Areas)

Flood Insurance (County CRS Program)