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Media Release

Ensure your home is ready for cyclones this Christmas
Friday 23 December 2011 – 12:20 PM

People in the Pilbara should ensure their homes and families are prepared for a tropical cyclone this Christmas.

The Bureau of Meteorology (BoM) advises that a low north east of Darwin could develop into a tropical cyclone on Christmas Day or early next week.
BoM Senior Meteorologist Brad Santos said there was potential for the low to affect the north Kimberley coast early next week, bringing a risk of strong winds, flooding and isolation.
“Communities in the north east Kimberley may be impacted by this system and while there is no direct threat to the Pilbara, people still need to be prepared,” Mr Santos said.
This will be the first tropical cyclone near the Australian coast for the 2011-12 season.
FESA Pilbara Regional Director Jonathon Newman said the wet season runs until the end of April and it is possible the Pilbara region could experience several tropical cyclones this season.
“Many people leave their homes during the holiday season but they need to make sure they have made the necessary preparations in the event of a cyclone crossing the coast while they are away,” Mr Newman said.
“Residents should take proactive steps to clean up and prepare now, particularly if they are going away over Christmas.”
FESA’s State Emergency Service (SES) has these tips for people preparing their homes:
• Trim tree branches and dispose of debris
• Put cyclone shutters on windows
• Secure outdoor furniture and loose material that could be blown around by extreme winds
• Put cyclone shutters or screens in place to protect windows and external doors
• Place boats, caravans and vehicles in sheds or secure them with correct cyclone tie down procedures
• Check your emergency kit which should include a first aid kit, torch, battery operated portable radio, spare batteries, water bottles, non-perishable food, a portable cooking devices and special needs for pets
• Prepare a plan for your family on what to do if a cyclone approaches
“I urge everyone in a cyclone prone area to keep up to date with the latest information and if you decide to leave before the cyclone hits give yourself plenty of time to get to a safer place,” Mr Newman said.
For helpful tips to stay safe, you can find a ‘Cyclone Smart’ kit at your local SES unit or for more information visit www.fesa.wa.gov.au.
Media Contact: Media and Public Affairs 9225 5955.


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