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Media Release

Pilbara to host public meetings for cyclone awareness
Tuesday 16 October 2012 – 5:15 PM

FESA and the Bureau of Meteorology (BoM) will hold a series of public meetings in the Pilbara region ahead of the Wet Season next month.

The start of the awareness tour in the Pilbara follows the release by BoM yesterday of the official tropical cyclone outlook for 2012-13 that forecasts a likelihood of around two coastal crossings, including a significant risk of at least one severe impact during the season.
FESA Pilbara District Officer Jim Cahill said the aim of the tour was to educate people about what to expect and how to prepare for the upcoming season.
“Local communities and travellers to the North West are invited to come along to learn vital information about what to do before, during and after a cyclone,” Mr Cahill said.
“The threat of cyclones is very real with five tropical cyclones forming off the coast last season, two of those directly impacting the Pilbara region.”
Mr Cahill said that last season in Port Hedland cyclones and associated heavy rain, flooding and destructive winds closed the local port, oilfields and gas production off the coast.
“Whether you live, work or travel in the North West, you need to know the community cyclone alerts system and the steps that must be taken for each as it is your responsibility to plan and prepare for the upcoming season,” he said.
Talk to your family and house mates about your cyclone plan and make sure everyone knows what to do, particularly during a Red Alert when you need to take shelter immediately and stay indoors until the All Clear is given.
People in the Pilbara are being reminded to plan now for the season by:
• Checking all cyclone shutters or screens on doors and windows.
• Organising an emergency kit including a portable battery operated radio, torch, spare batteries, mobile phone, first aid kit and enough food and water for at least four days.
• Making arrangements to properly secure any caravans, boats or trailers, particularly if you intend to go away for extended periods of time.
For more information about how to prepare your home and family for a cyclone or flood, get a copy of FESA’s Cyclone Smart or Flood Smart Kits from www.fesa.gov.au or your local SES unit.

Public meetings will be held in the following Pilbara locations:

Tuesday 16 October at 6.30pm
Tambrey Centre on Tambrey Drive
Wednesday 17 October at 10am
Karratha Youth Shed on Welcome Road
Wednesday 17 October at 6.30pm
Rio Tinto Training Centre - Training Room 1
Port Hedland
Thursday 18 October at 6.30pm
Civic Centre - Gratwick Hall on McGregor Street
South Hedland
Friday 19 October at 10am
JD Hardie Centre on Cottier Drive
The towns of Marble Bar, Nullagine, Newman, Tom Price, Paraburdoo and Pannawonica will also host public meetings the week starting Monday 22 October.
For more information about the public meetings, contact FESA Port Hedland on 9158 1300.
**Attention Chiefs of Staff/Editors

FESA District Officers and Bureau of Meteorology Managers will be available for media interviews before or after the public meetings.
Contact FESA Media and Public Affairs for more details.

Media Contact: Media and Public Affairs 9225 5955.


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