Cyclone Warnings, Watches and Evacuations

Australia has a good system for detecting and reporting on Cyclone activity.  A Cyclone Watch is issued if there is a risk of Cyclone.  A Cyclone Warning is issued when it is time to complete your preparations.  A Local Evacuation may be issued if necessary.

When a Cyclone Watch is Issued

  • Re-check your property for any loose material and tie down (or fill with water) all large, relatively light items such as boats and rubbish bins.
  • Fill vehicles’ fuel tanks. Check your emergency kit and fill water containers.
  • Ensure household members know which is the strongest part of the house and what to do in the event of a cyclone warning or an evacuation.
  • Turn to your local radio/TV for further information and warnings.
  • Check that neighbours are aware of the situation and are preparing.

When a Cyclone Warning is Issued

  • Collect children from school or childcare centre and go home.
  • Park vehicles under solid shelter (hand brake on and in gear).
  • Put wooden or plastic outdoor furniture in your pool or inside with other loose items.
  • Close shutters or board-up or heavily tape windows. Draw curtains and lock doors.
  • Pack an evacuation kit of warm clothes, essential medications, baby formula, nappies, valuables, important papers, photos and mementos in waterproof bags to be taken with your emergency kit.  Large/heavy valuables could be protected in a strong cupboard.
  • Remain indoors (with your pets). Stay tuned to your local radio/TV for further information.

On Warning of Local Evacuation

  • Based on predicted wind speeds and storm surge heights, evacuation may be necessary. Official advice will be given on local radio/TV regarding safe routes and when to move.
  • Wear strong shoes (not thongs) and tough clothing for protection.
  • Lock doors; turn off power, gas, and water; take your evacuation and emergency kits.
  • If evacuating inland (out of town), take pets and leave early to avoid heavy traffic, flooding and wind hazards.
  • If evacuating to a public shelter or higher location, follow police and State Emergency Services directions.
  • If going to a public shelter, take bedding needs and books or games for children.
  • Leave pets protected and with food and water.

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