When a severe storm hits, stay indoors and away from windows or other openings. Move to the strongest and safest part of the house, in most cases the cellar or bathroom. If the storm finds you outdoors, run to any emergency shelter and never shelter under a tree.

Extreme weather such as a storm has become a norm of the sub-tropical climate in Brisbane. Each year, Brisbane reports severe weather and hence it’s crucial that you take proper measures in advance to protect your family, property and pets.

Below are important tips on what your emergency kit should contain and how to remain safe before, during and after an extreme weather event.

Preparing for storms

Before the storm season sets in, equip your emergency kit in readiness and trim tree branches and cut trees near your house. If you have large trees on your property that are not protected under the Council’s Natural Assets Local Law, plan to have an arborist inspect them. In addition, you should:

  • Clean and clear your roof gutters and downpipes
  • Remove loose objects from your yard and balcony including outdoor furniture or toys that could become missiles during a storm
  • Use sandbags to minimise the effects of flooding on your property
  • Arm yourself with a masking tape, plastic sheeting or large garbage bags for emergency rain protection
  • Let everyone in your household familiarise themselves with the emergency plan and any information on what to do when a storm strikes.

Storm emergency kit

Your emergency kit should contain the following items:

  • Portable battery-powered radio and torch with spare batteries and bulbs
  • A list of local radio stations for emergency information
  • Candles with waterproof matches and or a gas lantern
  • Enough stocks of clean drinking water and dried or tinned food
  • A fully-equipped first aid kit and have some basic first aid knowledge
  • Keep enough supply of essential medication
  • Heavy clothing, sturdy shoes and rubber gloves
  • Waterproof bag to keep clothes and other valuables. Place all valuable items and documents in the bag and place the bag in a safe place
  • A clear list of your emergency contact numbers
  • Car charger for your mobile phone

You can also check out the latest online home readiness checklist provided by the Council to confirm if your property is ready to handle a severe weather event including storm.

As the storm approaches

When a severe storm arrives, ensure your mobile phone is handy with a fully charged battery. Disconnect all electrical appliances and stay tuned to a local Brisbane radio station for up-to-date weather news.

Move your vehicles to the garage or cover them with blankets or tarpaulins. Secure and shelter your pets and other animals.

When the storm strikes

When a severe storm hits, stay indoors and away from windows or other openings. Move to the strongest and safest part of the house, in most cases the cellar or bathroom. If the storm finds you outdoors, run to any emergency shelter and never shelter under a tree.

You should always:

  • Stay tuned to your local radio station for storm updates
  • If driving, avoid going through flooded roads or those with fallen trees or powerlines
  • Avoid using the telephone during a storm

After the storm passes

  • After the storm passes, listen to your local radio station for official information, advice and warnings. If you need emergency assistance, call:
  • 000 (triple zero) – for life threatening emergencies
    The State Emergency Service (SES) on 132 500 – for temporary roof repairs or sandbagging.
If you aren’t in need of emergency service, at least check if your neighbour does.

After the storm, it’s important to:

  • Inspect your house for damage
  • Stay away from fallen powerlines and report any to Energex on 13 19 62
  • Beware of damaged buildings, fallen trees and flooded watercourses
  • Be available to help neighbours if need be

For power interruptions, call Energex on 13 62 62.

The information contained in this article is of a general nature only. It does not take your specific needs, objectives or circumstances into consideration, and is not financial advice, legal advice or otherwise a recommendation to purchase any financial product or insurance policy. You should seek your own independent financial advice from a qualified financial and insurance adviser before making any financial decisions, and seek your own independent legal advice from a qualified solicitor before making any decisions of a legal nature.

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