Bushfire Safety

Ensuring you have the right action plan

Picture from Black Saturday Bushfires

With the waves of summer heat rolling in and the tidal mercury rising, it is important to be safe and aware in Australia’s bushfire season.

The summer months are here and with them the omnipresent danger of bushfires in our surrounding leafy environment. Calculated caution rather than misguided fear is your best weapon of action this season.

It is strongly advised that an action plan for your family is put into place and every member knows how to react in any scenario. In any given case a decision must be made to leave the property or to stay and defend and this can be dependent on a few factors.

Is the Fire Danger Rating extreme or catastrophic? If so it is best to leave immediately as indecisiveness could prove harmful for your family. Do you have a home specially designed to withstand fire and a pro-active action plan? If not it is also imperative that you evacuate your family.

For more information about these homes visit: www.rfs.nsw.gov.au

There are a few vital points that the New South Wales Rural Fire Service makes for homes in danger of bushfires.

“How will you PREPARE. ACT. SURVIVE?”

“Will you Leave Early or will you Stay and Defend?”

“What will your triggers be to act?”

“What will your back-up plan be?”

It is important to understand how these points relate in respect to your own home and if your house is in risk of bushfires. You can check this at the above site.

RFS has a good planning document "Bushfire Survival Plan" click here to go to it now.
RFS has a good planning document “Bushfire Survival Plan” click here to go to it now.

Now, if your home is not in direct risk of a bushfire there are still some general actions that can be taken to ensure maximum safety and security. Making sure your family has an understanding of bushfires and bushfire safety is important and guarantees that youngsters especially, experience minimised panic in any event when they have a working knowledge of what is happening around them.

Ensure there are basic preparations made to your home. Never underestimate the power of a small ember. From little things big things grow, there’s a reason why it’s a catchy jingle. Remember to clean out your gutters, maintain overhanging trees, invest in non-combustible fences and plant trees and shrubs that are less likely to ignite.

Keep self-informed on days when the fire danger is increased. Make sure you know what the fire danger rating is if there is a fire and act accordingly. You should always make educated decisions and avoid operating with hysteria and misinformation.

There is never a plan too detailed and in keeping with safety concerns a back-up plan should always be readily available to utilise. The power of nature serves no scaffold and situations can escalate, it is important that there are solutions for any scenarios that are naturally possible. Bushfires are a serious matter and should be treated as such; a family home can be rebuilt whilst a family cannot.

Preparing emergency survival kits can never go astray and packing items such as portable radios, spare batteries, first aid kits; waterproof torches and woollen blankets can make all the difference. Before leaving you should also add cash, medication, sanitary supplies, mobile phones and chargers, important documents, changes of clothes and enough drinking water to last each person a couple of days.

Look after your loved ones this season and make sure they are aware and ready to prepare, act and survive in the case of any emergencies. Have a safe and wonderful summer.

About Sandra 111 Articles
Sandra is a staff writer at The Kuringai Examiner. She likes to take on research-focussed articles. Shy and retiring, Sandra likes nothing more than scouring a pile of books and research articles for a morsel of information.