A Guide to Disaster Preparedness for Australian Communities

Ken Walker

While a person can hope for the best and hope that all goes well in life they still need to prepare for the worst conditions. Disaster can happen at any time and having a good disaster preparedness plan for relief and mitigation. May help reduce injuries and economic damage from such disasters. Local plans can help an area facing a disaster and will help first responders and other emergency resources get to help those in need right away.

Communication is an important part of a disaster preparedness.

Not only do individuals need to have a plan to track down all of their loved ones, but a community also needs a plan especially if they need outside help. Furthermore, family members need to have all of their numbers and other contact information on a card that it kept in a wallet or a purse. This way if they do not know a number of hand, they can track down their family for advice.

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The community also needs to have a plan.

They can have a designated shelter set up for those in need. Shelters are often sturdy public buildings pre planned to provide assist. These shelters are often housed in schools or community buildings. In case of an emergency, there should be information in these buildings about where to find help and contact information for organizations who may assist.

Warnings and notifications.

There are often warnings provided ahead of disasters. So communities can be fully aware that an event is probably inevitable. Technology advancements have allowed authorities to communicate effectively.

There can be alerts from the local news stations. Which are sent to smartphones warning of an upcoming weather event. It is advantageous for radio and local television stations to exercise and practice emergency for alerts. It should be stressed to all community members that severe weather and/or other emergency alert are not a joke and need to be taken seriously.

Evacuation procedures and disaster preparedness.

If a person needs to get away from the coast or vulnerable area, there should be adequate information available on how to do that. Living along the sea a person should have a place to go inland where they can stay. They can stay with a friend of a family member or similar. In fact, they could also stay at a hotel or a shelter if it is open.

another-flood disaster

Leaving Early and evacuation.

All community members should also have a predetermined location picked out. If a person waits until the last possible minutes to leave the consequences could be devastating.

If a town is being evacuated than it is essential that a person pay attention and follow advice, no matter how communicated. They should not stay in their home unless the emergency services indicate that it is safe to do so.

If residence do this it can take emergency responders away from the important job of dealing with the emergency situation. They should pay attention to the times their specific area is being evacuated. This will reduce congestion during this process and make sure everyone gets out in a timely manner. it is up to community leaders to develop this disaster preparedness evacuation plan ahead of time.

Providing help for those in need during disasters.

Some people may not own a car, requiring pre-planning to ensure they can evacuate quickly like everyone else. Communities may want to set up a bus to take residents that are not able to leave on their own.

Being prepared is the key here.

Therefore, all people should bring a change of clothing and make sure their mobile device is charged. Turning of utilities going into the home may need to be shut off. Furthermore, most homes need to be secured by locking the doors and the windows. Plans for taking pets along should also be well planned.

Rescuers should not have to go back and save pets that were left behind. Vulnerable communities needs to have evacuation route planned well ahead of time. Emergency personnel may or may not be around to direct those on the evacuation route to make sure they are going in the right direction and taking the right course.

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Responsibilities and disaster preparedness

While many people think of disasters as an act of nature. Fires and other emergencies can do substantial damage impacting communities far and wide.
With the hot climate, a fire can happen at any time.

Local government planning Committee’s are tasked with responsibility to ensure resources are allocated and made available when required.
Disaster preparedness plans couldn’t be more critical and need to be relevant, workable and tested. I.e. pre planned evacuation routes will promote less traffic gridlock, thus quicker evacuation. This will reduce confusion when there is an emergency and there will be a plan to help reduce panic.

Government departments and disaster preparedness.

There are some pre activities that the government must take. Ensuring, agencies know what they need to know and where they need to go in case of an emergency. These agencies should develop disaster preparedness plan in consultation with each other. This plan will help determine the responsibility of each agency and how they are going to help communities. They need to ensure that they act quickly, when required, and have an effective plan in place.

Before there is an emergency there are some ways to reduce the risk and the chance of things happening in the first place. The disaster preparedness plan will help give people the chance to reduce risks. This includes the risk of fires or other damage that can be result due to the negligence of humans.

 

Keeping planning local and empowering communities.

Prevention is the best way to reduce the chance of disasters. Besides human life, the community needs to identify what assets and structures are important to protect and which areas they should respond to first.

They should have this developed so there is no confusion at the time and they all share the same value. If there is limited resource than it is important to know what to get to first. Having a well-developed plan with input from most agencies will help reduce chaos in case of an emergency.

It is essential that there is a plan that is there to enact in case of an emergency. The plan should be prepared well in advance. It should be designed with a reaction in mind and hopes that it will never have to be used. It is necessary to have a disaster preparedness plan ahead of time to reduce panic and survival instinct when disaster strikes.

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