Australia is a beautiful and unique country. The contrast of the red outback, rich rainforests, snowy mountains, golden beaches and bustling cities make our country an extraordinarily rare and exciting place to live.
With the privilege of being a resident of the land down under comes the responsibility of being prepared for natural disasters. For the most part, these precautions are simple but important whether you’re renting or own your home. You should also ensure any investment properties you own are up to scratch as well as the homes of any elderly or vulnerable friends, family and neighbours you may have.
Below is a brief overview for most hazards however, we strongly recommend you download the Fire and Emergency Services official guide here for more in depth information regarding Storms, Bushfires and Floods.
1. Keep trees well trimmed and clear of the house. Get large trees checked by an arborist. Clear your gutters, downpipes and stormwater drains. Ensure your house is properly sealed by filling in any gaps around windows, door frames and eaves. Ensure there is clear access for emergency vehicles.
2. Keep your property safe from flammable materials and chemicals.
3. Never go near fallen powerlines – report them to Energex on 13 19 62.
4. Prepare an emergency kit consisting of first aid supplies, bottled water, non-perishable food, torches, radio and camp stove. Check the Get Ready Guide here for a full checklist.
5. Secure any loose items such as outdoor furniture and toys that could become a hazard.
6. Prepare for your pets’ safety too – include pet food in your emergency kit and make sure your dog is registered and microchipped.
7. Prepare an evacuation plan. Remember to consider how road closures and interruptions to public transport could affect you and your ability to leave the area. Don’t wait till it’s too late.
8. Talk to your neighbours who may have experienced floods, fires and storms in the area to get an idea of what to expect and to have someone nearby in an emergency.
9. Understand your insurance policies – home, investment properties, contents, vehicle, business. If you’re insurance company isn’t transparent with their policies or there appears to be loopholes, we can connect you with an insurance specialist who will get you on the right plan before it ends up costing you your home.
10. Have an emergency contact list in plain sight including 000 (triple zero) and SES (13 25 00) as well as the loved ones you will need to check on if a natural emergency hits.
11. Register for severe weather alerts. Pay attention to radio, television and online weather updates for the most up to date information.
12. Masking tape and plastic sheeting or large garbage bags can be used to protect your property from heavy rain in an emergency. Plastic shopping bags can be used as sand bags.