With the start of the wet season next month, FESA and the Bureau of Meteorology will begin their pre-season awareness tour on Monday 24 October in Broome.
FESA Kimberley District Manager Matt Reimer said people should come along to a series of public meetings, which include the Bureau’s tropical cyclone season forecast and vital information about what to do before, during and after a cyclone.
“Last season the Kimberley experienced heavy rainfall and one of the strongest La Niña’s on record leaving many people in need of emergency assistance,” Mr Reimer said.
“The region was hit by five tropical cyclones which resulted in extensive flooding and damage to infrastructure.
“Many homes in the community of Warmun were destroyed and with the Great Northern Highway impassable, many communities were left isolated and were forced to evacuate,” he said.
During the season cyclones, flooding and storms caused several communities to be without power, water, fuel supplies, communications and essential services.
“The best defence is to prepare your home before the season officially begins in a few weeks and have a family cyclone plan,” Mr Reimer said.
“I encourage you to talk to your family about your plan including who will pick the kids up from school, who will get cash out, what you will do with your pets and where you will go if you are forced to relocate.
“Know what you will do during a cyclone. Go to the strongest safest place of your house or the closest welfare centre, remembering to stay indoors until the all clear is given,” he said.
Residents in the Kimberley are being reminded to reinforce windows and doors around their home, identify the safest part of their home, prepare an emergency kit including a portable battery operated radio, torch, spare batteries and first aid kit and prepare sandbags in case of flooding.
For more information about how to prepare your home and family for a cyclone, get a copy of FESA’s Cyclone Smart Kit from www.fesa.gov.au or your local SES unit.
Public meetings will be held in the following locations:
Tuesday 25 October at 10am and 5.30pm
10am – Staff Presentation, Curtin Detention Centre, Curtin RAAF Base, Derby Highway
5.30pm – Public and SES Volunteers meeting, Derby FESA Collocation, Sutherland Street Derby
Wednesday 26 October at 6pm
Public and VES Volunteers meeting, Fitzroy River Lodge, Great Northern Highway Fitzroy Crossing
Thursday 27 October at 7pm
Public and VES Volunteers meeting, Kimberley Hotel, Roberta Avenue Halls Creek
Thursday 3 November at 6pm
Public and SES/Volunteer Fire and Rescue Service/Bush Fire Brigade Volunteers meeting, All Seasons Hotel, Messmate Way Kununurra.
For more information about the public meetings, contact the FESA Broome office on (08) 9158 3200.
Attention Chiefs of Staff/Editors:
SES District Managers and BoM Regional Managers will be available for media interviews before and after the public meetings.
Contact FESA Media and Public Affairs on (08) 9225 5955 for more details.