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26 things to do to prepare for severe storms

Ipswich has already copped its share of severe storms this season, and it’s likely there will be more before the traditional storm season is done.

University of Southern Queensland experts in disaster preparedness have created the ultimate storm checklist based on extensive research and work with emergency services.

Dr Barbara Ryan, a disaster and emergency communications researcher, said storms were becoming more intense and evidence showed that a lack of hazard preparedness had led to many otherwise preventable deaths, injuries and damage.

“From 1987 to 2016, storms in Australia killed 89 people, injured 360, caused 15,500 people to become homeless and directly affected over four million people,” Dr Ryan said.

“Yet many communities mostly remain unprepared for the impact of natural hazards, even in areas at high risk of storms like all of us in south-east Queensland.

“We also need to get ready for cyclones moving further south – most of us are nowhere nearly as ready as North Queenslanders for cyclones and bad storms.”

So how prepared are you? Take a look at the USQ checklist below.

Storm preparation checklist

Safety preparation (On the approach to each storm season)

  1. Do you identify the safest room in the house in which to shelter?
  2. Do you review how to switch off water, gas and power?
  3. Do you prepare a storm emergency plan in your head?
  4. Do you prepare a written storm or emergency plan?
  5. Do you discuss the storm emergency plan with your family/household?
  6. Do you prepare an emergency kit (including safety clothing and equipment) for self/family?
  7. Do you contact the State Emergency Service for advice, or search the website?
  8. Do you monitor weather regularly/search for more information on the cyclone or storm?
  9. Do you ensure you have a battery-operated radio?
  10. Do you ensure you have battery backup/charging for your mobile phone?
  11. Do you practice the storm emergency plan?

Preparation of house (On the approach to each storm season)

  1. Do you clear leaves and grass from around the house?
  2. Do you clear gutters?
  3. Do you cut back trees near the house?
  4. Do you check your roof to make sure it is in good condition?
  5. Do you bring furniture and other loose items inside on bad days?
  6. Do you install or check protective covers for windows?

Preparation for leaving

  1. Do you arrange a safe evacuation place for family?
  2. Do you arrange a safe evacuation place for pets?
  3. Do you arrange a safe evacuation place for large animals/livestock?
  4. Do you plot evacuation routes?
  5. Do you pack supplies for pets/livestock ready to go?
  6. Do you pack valuables and overnight bag ready to go?

Preparation for post-impact

  1. Do you make sure you have enough water for three days?
  2. Do you make sure you have enough food for three days?
  3. Do you organise a secondary power

Don’t forget to also checkout the Ipswich City Council storm preparedness website here for more info.

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