There are a number of actions you can take to protect yourself before, during and after a storm:
There are things you can do well in advance to prepare yourself and your community for storms:
- Trim or remove trees and branches overhanging your home, business or powerlines on your property.
- Test batteries in radios and torches.
- Put together an Emergency Kit which includes:
- A battery-operated or wind-up radio;
- A battery-operated or wind-up torch;
- Spare batteries;
- A first aid kit;
- Rubber gloves and strong leather or garden gloves;
- Mobile phone and charger;
- A waterproof bag or container;
- A good supply of medicines and prescriptions;
- Strong shoes or boots;
- A copy of your Emergency Plan;
- Special items for any vulnerable people, such as babies or the disabled; and
- Enough non-perishable food and water for every person (and pets).
- Invite the State Emergency Service to present an awareness and education program to your community group.
- Understand the Storm Warnings issued by the Bureau of Meteorology. Storm warnings cover a range of dangers: thunderstorms, lightning, hail, damaging winds, tornadoes, heavy rain and flash flooding.
For the most up-to-date warnings go to TasALERT, listen to your local ABC radio or visit the Bureau of Meteorology’s website.
To reduce the impact of storms:
- Secure outside items, including outdoor furniture and play equipment.
- Shelter indoors while the storm passes. Make sure your pets are inside.
- Check that neighbours know about the warnings and are prepared.
- Stay clear of windows in case they break.
- Get your Emergency Kit ready to go.
- Power blackouts can occur during storms. Turn off and unplug all non-essential electrical items.
- Lightning can be deadly. If outdoors, seek shelter immediately in a building or vehicle. NEVER shelter under a tree.
If you are driving:
- Be alert and watch for hazards such as powerlines, fast-flowing water, washed away roads or bridges, tree branches and roofing iron.
- Slow down, drive to suit the conditions and turn your headlights on.
- Make sure children are ALWAYS well supervised.
- Stay well clear of swollen creeks, drains, fallen trees, powerlines and damaged buildings.
- Always assume fallen powerlines are dangerous.
- Check that neighbours are okay, especially the elderly.
- If your home or property is damaged:
- Stay at ground level while checking for damage. Look out for broken glass, loose tiles or roofing iron, damaged powerlines and other debris.
- Contact your insurance company immediately. Take photos of the damage.
- If trees or branches have fallen around your yard and are not dangerous (e.g. over the driveway), contact your local tree service. Your insurance may cover these costs.
- Have storm or wind damaged wiring or other electrical equipment checked by an electrician.
- If your home is badly damaged and you need to relocate, take your Emergency Kit and pets with you.
For further information go to www.ses.tas.gov.au