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Get Informed (Warning Systems)

During an emergency, one of the best things you can do for your safety is keep informed about where the danger is, what is happening and what to do.

The Department of Fire and Emergency Services (DFES) recommends that people use a range sources of information about an emergency.

This includes:

  • using this website to access warnings
  • staying in touch with neighbours, family and friends
  • being alert and aware of your surroundings
  • tuning in to ABC local radio
  • listening to 6PR if you are in the Perth metropolitan area

If someone you know alerts you to a possible emergency, or if you can see or smell something that might be dangerous, that’s your warning.

The warnings information contained on this website is also provided via the DFES emergency information phone line (13 DFES or 13 3337), to the media and via DFES’ Twitter account.

Never rely on any one source and remember, you know best what is happening in your immediate surroundings.

If you believe you may be in danger, act immediately for your own safety.

In a life threatening emergency call triple zero (000).


How can I get informed?

Do these simple things to help you stay informed when it counts:

  1. Stay alert. This is one of the most important things you can do for your safety. The first time you find out about a fire will often be when you see it, smell it or see firefighting trucks or aircraft. As well as fires, tornados often occur without warning. You may see or hear the wind picking up, or see debris flying through the air. When an earthquake occurs you may feel the earth shaking. All of these are signs that danger is near and that you need to act. This may mean checking other sources of information, or moving immediately to a safer place.
  2. Get connected. Connected communities are safer communities. Stay in touch with neighbours, friends and family, whether via phone, social media or chatting over the fence. Your mum or a friend may ring you to let you know there is a bushfire near you, or a neighbour may mention a cyclone is approaching the coast. This is your warning. Act immediately for your own safety.
  3. Make sure your telecommunications company has your current address. In some circumstances the emergency services will be able to issue a telephone warning. This system uses the service address that you provide to your telecommunications company to find landlines or mobile phones in the area near the emergency. It is your responsibility to keep your address up to date. Find out more about Emergency Alert.
  4. Sign up to receive alerts
    • If you are on Twitter, you can follow @dfes_wa for the latest DFES alerts. You can also receive notifications of DFES warnings by going to @dfes_wa, following it and choosing Settings – Push Notifications.
    • Sign up to receive push notifications to your mobile or tablet in a specific area through the apps provided by organisations that use DFES’ CAP AU or RSS feeds. These include Emergency AUS, DPAW Alerts and National Bushfires. Please be aware that DFES cannot guarantee reliability, speed or availability of these apps as they are not run by DFES.
    • Other organisations such as Local Governments (Shires, Towns, Cities), private companies and others may provide access to other warning systems.
  5. Know that no warning system is foolproof. No matter how you think you might receive a warning, be flexible, sign up through multiple communication channels from multiple sources and never rely on any one source of information. Emergencies can be unexpected, occur suddenly and cause disruptions to power, internet and telecommunications systems. For this reason, DFES recommends you use a range of sources of information during emergencies and make judgements based on your individual circumstances to stay safe.

Do you know of any other great ways to receive warnings? Let us know at media@dfes.wa.gov.au and we will share the best options with the rest of WA.

What warnings does DFES provide?

DFES issues a range of warnings to inform the community during significant incidents threatening lives and property.

Warnings give you the best available advice about the levels of risk and danger and the actions to take.

DFES issues warnings for a wide range of incidents including bushfire, cyclone, tsunami, flood, storm, earthquake and hazardous material spills.

DFES places warnings on the DFES website at www.dfes.wa.gov.au/alerts, on the DFES Emergency Information LIne (13 DFES or 13 3337), provides warnings to media outlets, issues them via social media (Twitter: @dfes_wa), provides them to stakeholders such as other State Government agencies and utilities and uses several other communication channels to reach communities.

Agencies such as the Bureau of Meteorology, Department of Parks and Wildlife and Geoscience Australia also issue emergency information and warnings.

Warning information may be accompanied by the Standard Emergency Warning Signal (SEWS) during emerging situations of extreme danger.

While every effort is made to ensure warnings are current and accurate, bushfires, storms and cyclones can be fast-moving and unpredictable – meaning information becomes outdated quickly. Warnings are based on the best information available at the time.

DFES warnings have been developed through community research and insights from major bushfires, cyclones, storms and other emergencies.

They include information from experienced emergency services personnel, who are looking out for your safety. So, always take notice and heed the warnings.

We rely on you to help us know where an emergency is. If there is a life threatening emergency, or if you can see smoke or fire and cannot see emergency services nearby, please call 000 to report it.

Access DFES warnings now

How can I get DFES warnings on my smart phone or tablet?

You can choose to receive DFES alerts and warnings using a range of smartphone apps direct to your mobile phone or tablet.

The different apps, listed below, offer different ways to receive alerts and warnings. You can choose to receive push notifications for an area you choose, for example, or receive all warnings from across the State.

Check the individual app for details on its own functionality.

Please remember that no technology is 100% reliable or guaranteed. DFES recommends using a range of sources to receive emergency information.

Note:

  • These apps are not managed by DFES and DFES is not responsible for their performance or function.
  • Inclusion in the list below does not indicate DFES endorsement of any products, services or recommendations contained within those apps.
  • Each app should be considered on its own merits, including factors such as the type of smartphone they work on, where they source information from, and how easy they are to use.
  • These factors should be reviewed on a regular basis as they may change at any time and without notice.
  • Smartphone apps which republish DFES Alerts and Warnings (at time of writing):

    Emergency Aus

    Platforms: Apple iOS, Android Allows you to set up specific locations for which you would like to receive alerts and warnings for from both DFES and Parks and Wildlife. This could be your home, workplace, location of another property or the home of a family member.

    DPAW Alerts

    Platforms: Apple iOS Includes both DFES and Parks and Wildlife alerts and warnings, as well as other Parks and Wildlife related information.

    National Bushfires

    Platforms: Apple iOS, Android Includes Bureau of Meteorology warnings, as well as DFES and Parks and Wildlife warnings.

    FAQ: Does DFES have a smart phone or tablet app?

    Bushfire Warning System

    Before a bushfire starts, Fire Danger Ratings can provide you with advice about the level of bushfire threat on a particular day and how difficult and dangerous conditions will be if a fire starts. They are based on weather conditions forecast by the Bureau of Meteorology.

    During a bushfire, DFES and the Department of Parks and Wildlife issue community alerts and warnings for bushfires that threaten lives and property. They are only issued once firefighters have arrived at the scene and determined that there is a threat or potential threat to the community.

    The alert level changes to reflect the increasing risk to your life.

    DFES and the Department of Parks and Wildlife issue the following bushfire warnings:

  • Advice  A fire has started but there is no known danger, this is general information to keep you informed and up to date with developments.
  • Watch and Act There is a possible threat to lives and homes. Conditions are changing, you need to leave the area or prepare to actively defend your home to protect you and your family..
  • Emergency Warning You are in danger as your area will be impacted by fire. You need to take immediate action to survive. Listen carefully as you will be advised whether you can leave the area or if you must shelter where you are as the fire burns through your area. . An emergency warning may be supported with a siren sound called the Standard Emergency Warning Signal (SEWS). ese factors should be reviewed on a regular basis as they may change at any time and without notice.
  • All Clear The danger has passed and the fire is under control, but you need to remain vigilant in case the situation changes. It may still not be safe to return home.
  • Go to DFES' Alerts and Warning Page

    Related information

    Cyclone Warning System

    The Bureau of Meteorology (BoM) issues cyclone advice to the public in the form of a Cyclone Watch and Cyclone Warning.

    Community Alerts

    DFES then issues Community Alerts to keep people informed and safe.

    The alert level changes to reflect the increasing risk to your life and advises what you need to do before, during and after a cyclone.

    DFES then issues the following cyclone alerts, Blue, Yellow, Red and All Clear.

    • Blue Alert
      Get Ready for a cyclone. You need to start preparing for cyclone weather.
    • Yellow Alert
      Take action and get ready to shelter from a cyclone. You need to prepare for the arrival of a cyclone.
    • Red Alert
      Take shelter from the cyclone. You need to go shelter immediately.
    • All Clear
      The Cyclone has passed but take care. Wind and Storm surge dangers have passed but you need to take care to avoid the dangers caused by damage.
    • Cyclone Watch
      Is used when damaging winds or gales are expected to affect communities within 48 hours.
    • Cyclone Warning
      Are issued when damaging winds or gales are likely to affect communities within 24 hours.

    Flood Warning System

    The Bureau of Meteorology (BoM) issues flood warnings to the public in the form of a Flood Watch or Flood Warning.

    DFES then issues Community Alerts to keep people informed and safe. These alerts will include advice about what you need to do before, during and after a flood. 

    Go to DFES' Alerts and Warnings page  

    Storm Warning System

    The Bureau of Meteorology (BoM) issues severe weather  and thunderstorm warnings to the public when weather conditions are developing or occurring in a specific area.

    DFES also issues Community Alerts about storms to help people keep themselves safe.

    Storm safety information 

    Go to DFES' Alerts and Warnings page

    Tsunami and Earthquake Warnings

    The Joint Tsunami Warning Centre operates 24 hours a day to detect and warn of a tsunami threat to the coastline of Australia. They will issue a Tsunami Watch or Warning if seismologists determine that there is a potential or actual tsunami threat.

    Geoscience Australia monitors earthquakes throughout Australia and issues notifications if an earthquake is detected. You can also report an earthquake on their website if you have felt an earthquake recently. 

    DFES also issues Community Alerts about tsunami threats and major earthquakes to help keep people informed and provide advice about what to do. 

    Go to DFES' Alerts and Warnings page

    HAZMAT and other warnings

    If a major structure fire or hazardous materials (HAZMAT) incident is threatening the surrounding community, DFES may issue an advice to keep the wider community informed of the danger and what to do.

    Once the danger has passed, DFES will issue an All Clear to advise the community that the incident is controlled or contained. 

    Go to DFES' Alerts and Warnings page

     

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