Get Ready for disasters

Each year, communities across NSW experience a range of emergencies, including bushfires, home fires, floods, storms, heatwaves and power outages.

In 2020 we’ve seen an unparalleled number of events impacting large areas of NSW happen in quick succession, highlighting the importance of being prepared for all hazards.

Our emergency service organisations do an incredible job keeping us safe, but they can only do so much.

Being aware and prepared is everyone’s responsibility.

This year, we want every home in the Macleay Valley to have a bushfire survival plan. Here’s how…

It’s important that you sit down with everyone who lives at your place, to make the plan - so everyone knows what you will do and when you will do it - before bushfires start.

Follow the five simple steps below, download and complete your Bushfire Survival Plan

You’ll then have a bushfire survival plan for your family and home, plus you’ll know what you need to do to Get Ready this bushfire season.

If you need a more detailed plan, or are planning to stay and defend in some circumstances, visit the NSW Rural Fire Service (NSW RFS) online tool at www.myfireplan.com.au  You can complete the steps there and print a PDF version to keep at home.

If online isn’t your thing, contact us on 6566 3200 for a hard copy Bushfire Survival Plan document to complete.

Step 1. Know your risk

Kick off week one, by watching (with your family) the NSW RFS video Bush Fire Fact - Know your risk.

Complete Step 1 in the Bushfire Survival Plan

If you want more detailed information, you can also take a look at the NSW RFS Know Your Risk  web page. You might like to complete the online tool - assess my risk 

Step 2. Plan now for what you will do

Time to take the next step, by completing a written bushfire survival plan, together with everyone who lives in your home.

Watch (with your family) the NSW RFS video Bush Fire Fact - Make your bushfire survival plan.

Complete Step 2 in the Bushfire Survival Plan

This week, you'll also need to get a home emergency kit together, to keep ready for any emergency.

You will need to make some decisions which are outlined in the Plan.

You can find neighbourhood safer places here, or ask your nearest NSW RFS brigade.

Check the Bushfire Survival Plan for what to put in an emergency kit, or visit the  NSW RFS emergency kit page  or the NSW SES website 

Congratulations on completing your bushfire survival plan - place it with your emergency kit and make sure everyone in the house knows where it is kept.

You’re not done yet - there’s three more steps to Get Ready this fire season.

Step 3. Prepare your property

This week it’s time to prepare your home, yard, or farm property for fire season.

A well-prepared home is easier to defend against fire and is safer for you and volunteer firefighters.

Watch (with your family) the NSW RFS videos to help you plan the jobs you need to do to make sure your home is well-prepared.

Set aside some time on the calendar when you will undertake the jobs listed to prepare your home.

Complete Step 3 in the Bushfire Survival Plan

It’s a fact that many homes are under-insured for bushfire and can’t be rebuilt for the amount they are insured for.

Check your insurance policy and talk to your insurer if you think this might be the case.

Place a copy of your insurance documents in the emergency kit, or make sure you have the “Know Risk” insurance tracker app on your phone to keep track of your policies.

If you can’t physically do the work to prepare your home, please don’t hesitate to ask your family, friends or engage a service to help you. If you have limited support from these sources, then the NSW RFS’s AIDER service may be able to help you. There’s information on the RFS website  or you can call 8741 4955 or email aider@rfs.nsw.gov.au

Step 4. Be aware

This week make sure you are keeping aware every day during fire season.

Download the Fires near me mobile app  to your phone so you will receive alerts when fires are near you.

Watch (with your family) the NSW RFS video on the fire ratings, and make sure you check page 2 of the Bushfire Survival Plan to understand the fire warnings that the NSW RFS issues:

Check the Stay Updated section in the Bushfire Survival Plan [ksc.pub/bushfireplan] 

Ways to stay updated

Step 5. Look out for each other

This week, we need to make sure we help others get ready too.

Share information with your family, friends, neighbours and those who may need assistance – especially older neighbours, and people with a disability.

There’s handy information to share with people with a disability, on the Resilience NSW website here.

Make sure older neighbours have prepared their homes for bushfire season, and they have completed the Bushfire Survival Plan.
Write down the names and phone numbers of anyone who is vulnerable, or may need your during a fire emergency – it’s the last item on your Bushfire Survival Plan

In an emergency, make sure you call them early and help them leave early too.

Talk about your plans with family, friends and neighbours before an emergency happens.

Get Ready for ANY disaster in five simple steps

Resilience NSW outline 5 simple steps to Get Ready for disasters - we should all be undertaking these to stay safe. Their website is www.emergency.nsw.gov.au/getready  

  1. Know your risk
    Think about the area you’re in and the types of disasters that could affect you.
  2. Plan now for what you will do
    Sit down and talk with your family and plan for what you will do if a disaster affects your area.
    Complete NSW RFS and the NSW SES emergency plans, print them out and keep with your emergency kit.
    Put together a Home Emergency Kit - follow this link and the SES will guide you through putting your kit together.
  3. Get your home ready
    Prepare your home by doing general home maintenance and checking your insurance coverage.
    These videos from the NSW RFS and NSW SES will help you prepare your residential home or farm: View the Get Ready videos
  4. Be aware
    Find out how to prepare, what to do if there is a disaster in your area and connect with NSW emergency services to stay informed.
    For coverage of current events, tune into ABC Radio 95.5FM or 684AM

    For information on fire: Visit www.rfs.nsw.gov.au
    Rural Fire Service Information Line on 1800 679 737 or 
    For information about current Bushfire threats visit: www.rfs.nsw.gov.au/fire-information/fires-near-me or download the Fires near me mobile app.
    For information on storm, flood or tsunami events:
    Visit:  www.ses.nsw.gov.au
    NSW SES 132 500
  5. Look out for each other
    Share information and these steps with your family, friends, neighbours and those who may need assistance.

Get Ready Business

If your business was shut for a month or more, how would that impact you, your staff and their livelihoods?

Preparing for disasters is as important to successful business outcomes as making an annual business plan. 

Taking steps now to prepare against disaster is smart business. It can mean the difference between re-opening two days or two months after an event, or not at all. 

You think it will never happen to your business. Until it does. Are you ready?

Resilience NSW has a number of resources and tool kit to help businesses Get Ready.

Get Ready Animals

Animals rely on us to keep them safe. Emergencies can occur suddenly and planning for your pets and animals keeps everyone safe. Making an Animal Emergency Plan doesn’t take long. Make yours now. Find out more at the SES Get Ready Animals page.