Tablelands Regional Council Mayor Joe Paronella urges residents across the region to prepare for a possible cyclone event between Sunday 26 March and Tuesday 28 March.
Authorities are watching the movement of a Coral Sea tropical low which has been showing signs of strengthening and has been moving towards the south. During Saturday the low is expected to develop into a tropical cyclone and adopt a track towards the west, bringing it towards the north Queensland coast. Conditions are expected to favour the continued intensification of the system as it approaches the coast over the weekend.
Mayor Paronella indicates people should be acting now to ensure their properties are secured and that their supplies and other emergency equipment are well stocked.
“We do not want people to panic but we strongly urge residents to prepare for what could be a significant cyclonic event.
“People should make sure their homes and properties are secure, tidy up any debris laying around properties, and trim back vegetation that could cause damage.
“We ask residents to please act responsibly and be as prepared as they can be.
“We also urge people to check on their neighbours, particularly those who do not speak English as a first language and those who may be elderly or impaired to ensure they are aware of the situation.”
People in flood-prone areas should consider their options.
“If a significant cyclone hits this region, authorities will be very busy attending to urgent situations, so we ask residents to be as prepared as possible so as to avoid unnecessary demands upon emergency services.”
People should stock up on food, fuel and other essential items. Residents are advised to have adequate supplies to sustain them in the event that flooding occurs and roads are cut. Residents living in urban and rural areas should have at least one week’s supplies, while people living in more remote areas should have at least one month’s supplies or more if possible.
Sand is available for residents at the following locations over the weekend:
- Atherton SES HQ, 46 Mabel Street, Atherton
- 12th Avenue, Atherton (beside the water tanks)
- Williams Street Park, Herberton (close to SES HQ)
- Malanda Showgrounds, near the SES HQ
- Racecourse Road, Tolga (before the three shed buildings on the left as you enter Morrow Park)
Residents will need to bring their own shovel and be mindful of health and safety by not overfilling bags.
All residents should check that emergency kits are complete and prepare an evacuation kit.
The following items should be considered in emergency preparation plans.
What to have in a Disaster Preparedness Kit
- Battery operated torch and radio, with spare batteries
- Can opener and spare cooking and eating utensils
- Water containers
- Tinned food
Items to be added in the event of evacuation:
- Medication and toiletries
- First Aid Kit
- Spare sets of clothing
- Extra food and water
- Important personal documents in a waterproof container
- Pet food, leash &/or pet carrier
- A list of emergency phone numbers and addresses
- Store water in clean and safe plastic containers.
- Each person will need a minimum of five litres of water per day to allow for drinking, food preparation and personal sanitation (10 litres is preferable). Remember that following a cyclone or flood it is likely to be extremely hot and humid requiring a high level of fluid intake.
- If you live in an area with a town water supply, plan to have at least a week’s supply of water for each member of the family. If in a remote area, one month’s supply or more may be necessary.
- Store at least a week’s supply of non-perishable foods.
- Choose foods that don’t require refrigeration, can be eaten without preparation or cooking, require minimal water and have reasonable shelf life.
- Choose compact and light products just in case you need to evacuate.
- Ensure cooking facilities such as a gas BBQ, and gas/fuel/spirit camping stove are available for use.
Include the following foods in your kit:
- Ready to eat canned meats, fruits and vegetables
- Canned juices, milk and soups.
- Staples such as sugar, pepper, salt and high energy foods such as peanut butter, honey, jams, biscuits and muesli bars
- Food for babies, children, elderly persons or any special dietary requirements
- Comfort foods such as biscuits, lollies, cereals, milo, coffee and tea
Tools and supplies
- Plates, bowls, cups, knives and forks (paper or plastic plates and utensils do not require washing up)
- Battery operated radio and spare batteries
- Battery operated torches
- Non-electric can opener
- Utility knife
- Toilet paper/towlettes
- Personal hygiene items
- Duct and masking tape
- Mobile phone and charger
- Insect repellent and sunscreen
- Pliers, screwdrivers, drills, wrenches, spanners, bolts, screws and nails for temporary repairs
- Ropes, chains and pickets for securing outdoors items such as boats and garden sheds
- Extension cords and power boards
- Non-electric clock
- Plastic sheeting or tarps
- Baby needs such as nappies and bottles
- Contact lenses or prescription glasses
- Important family documents in a waterproof container:
- Wills, insurance policies, contracts, deeds, stocks and bonds
- Passports and immunisation records
- Bank account and credit card numbers
- Inventory of household contents
- Important telephone numbers and contact details
- Family records such as birth, marriage, divorce and death certificates
- Fuel for vehicles and generators
- Pet food and supplies
- Entertainment for the family such as games, books and puzzles.
If it is a life threatening situation, call 000.
SES call 132 500 for assistance with storm damage, rising flood water, fallen trees on buildings or roof damage.
Ergon Energy call 13 2296 for problems with electricity supply or to report a fallen powerline.
For up-to-date weather go to www.bom.gov.au