25 Jan

Are you prepared for Stormy Weather in South East Queensland?

Storm rolling into South East QLD

As we all know, the weather all around the world is so unpredictable.  Whether it be climate change, 100-year cycle, who knows.  All we know, is that we need to be prepared for the unexpected.

Storms in Queensland can be and have been spectacular but also fierce and destructive.

The Boy Scouts have the right Motto for such times – “Be Prepared”

Being prepared may not stop the unthinkable from happening, but it can lessen the blow.

Secure Your Property & Belongings

With the wild and woolly winds that we can encounter, anything that is not tied or screwed down can become a potential missile. 

This goes for everything from kids’ toys, outdoor furniture, cubby houses, dog houses and trampolines. The list goes on and on. 

Even if you think it is secure, check it and double-check it. 

If you cannot secure the item so that it cannot leave the ground, you may need to store it in a shed, under the patio, within your patio enclosure under the house or in the spare room. 

If you are going on holiday it is more important than ever to secure your items before you leave. 

At least if you are at home, you can run outside and move the last-minute items before the storm hits.  If you are away, this cannot happen.

Any objects left in the yard that can hold water, also become a breeding ground for mosquitoes, so make sure these items are cleared away as well.

Check your house over for loose objects as well.  Are all of your tiles secure or have you been meaning to fix that loose or broken tile for some time now? 

Check The Roof

Jump up into the roof via your manhole to see if you can see any light coming through.  If you can, there is a good chance that there may be an opening that water can come through. 

You will need to make sure that this is fixed before the rain hits.  A five-minute inexpensive job could save you lots of money and heartache should a major leak occur.

Make sure no trees are hanging close to powerlines or your roof.  If there are, give them a good trim to ensure that they will not hit in the high winds.  Depending on where the tree is, you may need Council approval for this.

Check Gutters And Downpipes

Clean out your gutters and downpipes. 

If they are blocked, they could overflow into your roof space.  If you have a Patio or Alfresco area attached to your home, make sure that you check the roof and gutters of these areas as well.

Make sure all of the stormwater overflows in your yards are clear as well.

Get Your Insurance Sorted

One of the most overlooked items in a lot of households is Insurance.  For some, this is an expense that they cannot manage. 

To me, Insurance is a must! 

Shop around, there are some good deals out there and most Insurance companies now accept monthly payments.  Much easier to be able to afford than a huge payment once a year. 

The other thing to check is whether you will be covered for flood damage.  Some Insurers will only cover water damage, depending on how the water enters your home and this is often not if it comes from above. 

You will also need to make sure that you have any additions such as a Patio or Verandah, Patio Enclosure or Swimming Pool Enclosure included in your insurance as well.

Prepare A Disaster Kit

In the worst case, if your home is struck by severe weather, have a kit ready to go. 

Make sure this includes water, some first aid supplies, a torch and anything else you can think of that you may need should the power go out. 

Just remember if the power is out, often the gas is switched off as well.

You can purchase the camp stoves from most Department stores or Camping stores that use the canister gas. 

These work well in an emergency. 

Just make the most of your situation and have a campout in the lounge with the kids. 

Most importantly of all, make sure you have a plan of attack ready to go if a storm hits. 

Prepare A Disaster Plan

Not everyone will be home and I feel sure that you want to know that your family is safe and secure. 

Make sure you have a plan to ensure that each family member is accounted for, be it via SMS or a phone call. 

If you need to leave your home, have an emergency meeting point, so that can all be together. 

Make sure that ALL of your household members are aware of this plan and know that they need to stick to it.  There will be enough stress and worry without having to track someone down.

Preparation Is Key

Hopefully, none of us will encounter having to sit through a storm or cyclone, but by following a few simple suggestions, you can help to minimise the risk and damage. 

Make sure that you listen to any advice given by the Emergency Services

Follow what they have to say. After all, they are the experts.