Like all regions across Australia, there is a risk of a disaster or emergency happening in the Burdekin Region. It is your responsibility to be prepared.
Advice from Telstra
Telstra encourages northern Queensland residents to be prepared so that can stay connected.
It’s important to think ahead. Staying connected in an emergency situation could be paramount to the safety of you and your loved ones.
Here are a few of Telstra’s tips on what you can do now that will make it easier to stay connected during a disaster. Try not to rely on any one of these things – make sure you have several options covered to stay connected.
Alternative phone charger
If you haven’t already, purchase a phone charger that isn’t dependent on a power outlet. Solar power chargers, in-car chargers and power bank chargers are all reliable options. Make sure you charge your power bank.
Back up data
Back up important data, like contact information and photos, to your cloud.
Know your numbers
Compile a list of essential contact numbers to store in your phone and keep them close at hand, including local Police, Fire, SES, family, friends and Telstra’s fixed line fault line – 13 22 03.
Satellite phones are usually immune to damaged infrastructure and can operate in remote locations. If communications are critical you could consider a satellite phone.
Fixed line phones
Have a spare battery
Remember, most modern cordless phones rely on electric power to operate, so you may lose the use of your landline during a power outage. Consider a phone with a battery backup function and keep spare batteries nearby.
For our NBN customers
It’s important to remember if your home phone now works through the modem and there’s a power outage, your phone line will also be down.
It is best to have a mobile phone handy, or a satellite phone for those in remote areas.
nbn reminds residents and businesses in North Queensland that equipment connected over the nbn™ network will not work during a power blackout.
A number of factors influence the resiliency of the nbn™ network to continue to provide uninterrupted services during a power outage. Even with network power resiliency and in-premises battery backup, power outages may last longer than the battery life. Therefore, we recommend you are always prepared to be without internet and telephone services for some time.
nbn recommends that you put together an emergency kit, which includes equipment that can be used in the event that there is a power outage, or your connection to the nbn™ network is disrupted (for example a charged mobile phone).
Keep a spare plug-in phone handy
Your cordless phone is great, but using a plug-in phone connects you to the telephone exchange.
Virtual meeting place
Set up an instant messaging group with family and friends. Agree in advance to update each other here during an emergency.
Download emergency service apps. They will give up to date warnings and incident information issued by official agencies across Australia.
Local information sources
Identify key local agency social media accounts and websites for real time information on what’s happening in your area.
Subscribe to text and emails that will alert you to weather changes, road closures and local emergency services updates.
Know your emergency broadcaster
Have a battery powered radio with spare batteries to listen to the news
The Telstra Network
Telstra is also taking steps to protect network infrastructure where possible, and working closely with communities to ensure they remain connected.
“We have a range of portable base stations that could be deployed to provide temporary telecommunications during an emergency situation and our teams will be on the ground working hard to maintain services for our customers and restore communications in the event of an emergency.”
During an emergency, customers can monitor our Service Status site to help keep up to date on any network impacts and restoration activities.
Prepare for a Cyclone
In Queensland we enjoy a wonderful climate and lifestyle which is the envy of many people worldwide.
Cyclones are an inevitable part of life in Queensland and history has shown that we cannot afford to become complacent about the dangers that they present.
It is vital that people living in areas prone to cyclones take action now to prepare their homes and their families so that damage can be minimised.
A few hours spent making your home secure, putting aside supplies and discussing an evacuation plan with your family could mean the difference between life and death.
Cyclones are destructive and inevitable
Every year between November and April, the coastal regions of Queensland are at risk of being hit by cyclones.
A cyclone is a violent storm characterized by high winds rotating around a calm centre that can produce winds in excess of 200 km/h. These strong winds can cause extensive damage to property and turn debris into dangerous missiles.
Being prepared is your responsibility
Preparing your family and your home for a cyclone is your responsibility.
Every person who lives in the cyclone-prone areas of Queensland must recognise this and make it a priority between the months of November and April.
While local, state and federal governments can spend millions of dollars every year on disaster mitigation, response and recovery, these efforts can be worthless if families do not take the proper precautions themselves.
Prepare for a Flood
Find out if you live or work in or near a flood-prone area. Your council can help you. Remember, you can still be affected by floods even if your property is not inundated by floodwater. You may become isolated or access to areas may be cut. If you live or work in or near a flood-prone area:
- The Local Disaster Management Plan includes specific flood information relevant to the Burdekin Shire.
- Know the height at which your home, business and/or property may be affected by floodwater. Find out how deep the water could get in and around your property
- Find out the safest route to travel in the event that you may need to evacuate and identify the height at which your evacuation route may be cut
- Find out where any evacuation centres will be set up in your area if there is a flood. If you prefer, check with friends and relatives who live close by to organise a place to go if evacuated
- Keep local emergency numbers handy (For example, near your phone or on your fridge)
- Put together an Emergency Kit for your home and business
You can download the current Local Disaster Management Plan using the following link:
- 2016-2017 Local Disaster Management Plan - (pdf 1.94 MB)
Prepare for an Emergency
Step 1 – Find out what the disaster risks are in your area??
Find out from your local Emergency Management Office or Council the following:
- What types of Disasters are likely to happen and how to prepare each year.
- What’s your community’s warning signals sound like and what to do if you hear them.
- How to help the elderly and people with special needs.
Step 2 – Create a family disaster plan
Hold a family meeting and keep it simple. Emphasise working together as a team during these times.
- Educate your children. It is important to educate children about disasters, without overly alarming them.
- Have a Plan. Talk about the disasters and what are the risks and what to do in case of an event (i.e separation after an event).
- Evacuation – If you are told to evacuate understand the importance and the urgency of the situation. Have a plan in place to notify friends and family of an evacuation.
Visit the Get Ready Queensland website for your household emergency plan template.
Step 3 – Complete the Checklist
Have a checklist readily available for your family.
The checklist should contain phone numbers, emergency kits, emergency supplies and other important documents and things you should do in the event of a disaster.
Step 4 – Practice and maintain your plan.
Ensure the family has a good understanding of the Family Plan and practice the plan on a regular basis.
Go over the family plan and do escape drills. Quiz the children and remember to replace stored food and water on a regular basis. It is also a good idea to replace the batteries in smoke alarms, torches, radio’s and other electronic equipment that may be necessary during a disaster at least every 12 months.
It is also important to meet with your neighbours to plan how you can work together during a disaster.
Talk about who has special skills (medical, technical, building) and also make arrangements for children if parents can get home.