After an intense start to storm season in Queensland, Ergon Energy is urging residents not to leave emergency planning until the last minute.
It comes as the region this year faces the effects of a La Niña weather pattern, expected to bring a wetter-than-average summer to northern and eastern Australia as well as increased tropical cyclone numbers.
Ergon community safety manager Aaron Smith said safety should be at the top of everyone’s checklist.
“You can start by checking your backyard for items that could become dangerous projectiles in a storm, like trampolines, report any trees growing close to powerlines to us on 13 74 66 and restock your storm kit with all the essentials,” he said.
“Preparing your family, home or business for a severe weather event can help lessen the blow if it eventuates.
“We can’t prevent cyclones and floods, but we can all take steps to stay safe before, during and after a storm. There’s a wealth of information to help you prepare at www.ergon.com.au.”
Ergon Townsville-based area manager Katrina Davidson said the memories of last year’s catastrophic flooding were still fresh in people’s minds.
“It has obviously been a long road to recovery for those who’ve had to rebuild, including some of our own people, but we have learnt some valuable lessons from an awful event,” she said.
“While we are accustomed to emergency response our experience during this unprecedented, rapidly-evolving weather event in Townsville reinforced the need to prepare for the unexpected.
“That message has never been more important than in 2020 when we’re facing the dual challenges of a pandemic and a La Nina event.”
Townsville Local Disaster Management Group Chair (TLDMG) and Mayor Jenny Hill has also issued a reminder to the community to be prepared – including ensuring there is an adequate and fully stocked emergency kit in their home.
“Residents should consider what they may need to survive in the case of any flooding or cyclone and this will vary depending on the circumstances of each family,” she said.
“The most important things to consider are what items you may need for children, photocopies of important documents, any medication and enough food and water to get through for a minimum of three days.”
For more information, and to see a checklist for things to include in a emergency kit, visit Prepare Your Emergency Kit.