Before a disaster

It is important to think about the future impact of storms, floods, bush fires and other emergencies. We can all be prepared by having and rehearsing your own tailored plan.

By following five simple steps in preparing for a disaster, you can help protect yourself, your family, your pets and your property.

5 steps to prepare for a disaster

Step 1.Know your risk

Think about the area you live in and the types of disasters that could affect you.

  1. Check the hazards in your location
  2. Check your personal situation
  3. Check the strengths and weaknesses of your property
  4. Assess your neighbourhood and communication
  5. Information for your extreme weather plan

Step 2.Plan what you will do in an emergency

Sit down and talk with your family and plan for what you will do if a disaster affects your area. You can print or save copies. Also think about:

  • When to leave, what to take, and what to do with animals? Don't leave it until the last minute. Disasters can happen with little or no warning. 
  • How will you, your family and neighbours get to a safe place? If separated how will you contact each other? 
  • How you will protect your pets, important documents and valuable personal items?
  • What would you include in your emergency kit? Prepare an emergency kit or visit Red Cross OR SES who have details on what to include.  
  • Plan how you will escape a fire in your home and practice it with your family.
  • Do you have neighbours who may need help in an emergency?

Step 3.Get your home ready

Prepare your home by doing general home maintenance and checking your insurance.

  • Trim overhanging trees and branches and remove dead and dry vegetation from around the house.
  • Clean out gutters and downpipes.
  • Secure or put away loose items in your yard or balcony.
  • Check the roof is in good repair. 
  • Make sure your smoke alarms are working. 
  • Make sure that your home and contents insurance is up-to-date.

Be ready for an emergency evacuation 

Step 4.Be aware

Find out how to prepare and what to do if there is a disaster in your area. Connect with NSW emergency services to stay informed.

Here are the best ways to stay informed:

Remember to stay in touch with family, friends and neighbours and share important updates about where you are with them.

Learn more about the Australian Warning System. 

Step 5.Look out for each other

Share information with your family, friends, neighbours and those who may need assistance.

Everyone can help each other in many ways in an emergency.

You and your neighbours can work together to prepare your homes, provide shelter and look after pets during a disaster. Neighbours can also often provide help to those who need greater assistance during emergency situations.

Together we can be stronger together by being prepared, looking out for one another and staying informed.