Queenslanders have been told to prepare for wild conditions this storm season. Some simple steps can ensure that your home and family remain safe, no matter what the weather conditions are!
We’ve put together some basic tips to help you get started on your storm season preparations! Read on below!
HOW TO PREPARE FOR WILD WEATHER
Trim trees & check powerlines
One of the biggest safety risks during a storm is the humble tree. Broken trees or overhanging branches can pose a significant threat to people and property. It is quite common to see trees bringing down powerlines in storms, posing a significant risk of electrocution for those nearby. To minimize the potential for this situation, it is recommended to do a full check of your property for any overgrown or precariously positioned trees. Any trees or branches that look like they may break during severe weather should be cut down if safe to do so.
Of course, if there are trees that are close to or overhanging power lines, contact a professional contractor and under no circumstances attempt to remove or cut down the branch yourself.
Check your switches
To best prepare for a storm (particularly a lightning storm) it is essential that you know how to turn off your electricity, gas, water and the main safety switch for your home. If you have solar, this is a good time to turn off the system according to the safety shutdown procedures.
It is a good idea to have a household emergency evacuation plan ready should an unforeseen event occur. Decide the best option for leaving and where you might go should severe weather impact your home. Make sure other members of the family are well aware of the plan and what needs to be taken in case you need to leave quickly!
In addition to this, it is a great idea to preassemble an emergency box of essentials for use during a storm or flood. Some of the items you should have on hand include; a torch, candles, radio, spare batteries, medication, bottled water and non-perishable food. Don’t forget to pack some things for your pets as well!
WHAT TO DO WHEN THE STORM HITS
Use your emergency radio to keep up to date with the current weather status and any further warnings that may have been issued. Some councils also have an emergency text alert services – check out the Brisbane City Councils Early Warning alert system here: https://ewa.brisbane.qld.gov.au
Do not touch any electrical equipment during a storm and do not use a phone connected to a landline as this may cause electric shock.
It is best to stay indoors during a storm with the windows and doors secured. If you are in a car when a storm hits, park your car away from powerlines, trees and watercourses and stay inside the vehicle unless unsafe to do so.
ONCE THE STORM IS OVER
As much as you will want to assess the damage and clean up quickly, you must remember that your safety takes priority. If any of your electrical devices or switchboard have been damaged, leave them alone and contact an electrician to assess them and make sure they are fit for use.
Stay away from fallen powerlines and always assume that they are live. Report any powerline damage to emergency services or the local electricity distribution entity.
In conclusion, the most important thing to remember when dealing with volatile weather are to be prepared and stay alert! Don’t delay – prepare today!