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Get Ready winners announced in time for severe weather season

Ipswich is no stranger to natural disasters, which is why it’s very important all residents prepare and Get Ready for severe weather this season.

Mayor Teresa Harding said everyone in our community has a role to play in preparing for emergencies and natural disasters.

“Time and time again our community has banded together to support each other through storms, bushfires and floods. However, an effective natural disaster response starts well before the event,” Mayor Harding said.

“Council is committed to supporting all residents to have a practical plan, emergency kits and check they have appropriate insurance coverage for when disaster strikes.”

As part of Get Ready Week, which raises awareness of disaster risk and preparedness, four residents won an emergency kit based on their excellent submissions about what actions they would take to prepare for severe weather or disasters that could affect their home, family or business.

Ilana (pictured above with Cr Kunzelmann) from Purga said, “I’m going to clean gutters, trim trees, keep insurance up to date and ensure I have a supply of batteries for torches, candles, matches and tarps”.

Why is this a great answer? Ilana is ticking all the boxes for getting ready at home including general maintenance, making sure the household is properly insured and having supplies in her emergency kit that will cover both power outages and roof damage which might result from severe storms.

Sara from Camira said, “I have an emergency kit packed and ready for myself, family, and pets”.

Why is this a great answer? Sarah’s pets are included in her emergency plan and kit! Many people consider pets as members of the family, which is why it’s important to make sure pet food, medication and other needs are catered for in an emergency kit.

Volunteer member of the Goodna SES unit, Scott from Collingwood Park said, “I’m going to prepare an emergency kit, get to know local hazards and have a list of emergency numbers and radios”.

Why is this a great answer? Scott is thinking about the hazards in his own neighbourhood and where he can get help during a disaster. It’s important for all residents to know their local hazards such as nearby rivers that might flood or bushland that may be at risk of bushfire.

Kiara from North Tivoli said, “I will check the Bureau of Meteorology radar and warnings for my area, and look on the Ipswich City Council website to see what precautions are needed to keep my family and I safe”.

Why is this a great answer? Kiara knows where to go for the latest severe weather warnings so she can get herself and her family ready for incoming severe weather. She also knows she can visit council’s emergency management website to find plenty of resources to help her get ready for all kinds of disasters.

An emergency kit is simply a collection of essential items that will equip your household for several days of outages to essential services like power, water and gas, as well as potential isolation from supermarkets and pharmacies, all of which might happen during and following a disaster.

Here is a handy list of items to keep in your emergency kit, and don’t forget to check it every few months to make sure all items are in working order and all food is in date.

City of Ipswich Local Disaster Management Group Deputy Chairperson Councillor Kate Kunzelmann said residents should prepare a household emergency plan and an emergency kit, as it could save their lives.

“Summer storms and the La Nina weather cycle we are currently experiencing means extreme weather conditions over the next few months are possible,” Cr Kunzelmann said.

“With more than a dozen waterways in Ipswich that can swell after heavy rainfall, like we have seen in recent weeks, the best time for residents to be prepared is before disaster strikes.

“I encourage residents to take a look at information on the Emergency Management pages on council’s website that can help them best prepare for an emergency or natural disaster.”

Council has also joined with Auslan to publish a series of emergency preparedness videos for residents who are deaf or hearing impaired.

The videos feature helpful tips and tricks to prepare Ipswich residents for storm season and have now been made accessible with Auslan interpretation added to each one.

Mayor Harding said access and inclusion makes communities liveable for everyone.

“As we head into storm season, it’s important every Ipswich resident and ratepayer has access to the information they need to get prepared,” Mayor Harding said.

The Auslan emergency preparedness videos can be viewed on council’s YouTube channel.

For the most up-to-date road closures, weather and disaster information affecting Ipswich, visit the Ipswich City Council Disaster Dashboard – https://disaster.ipswich.qld.gov.au

To more information about Get Ready Queensland and ‘3 Steps To Get Ready’, visit www.getready.qld.gov.au

Each year the damage bill from natural disasters costs Australians an average of $18 billion, with two thirds of those disasters occurring in Queensland.

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