Prevention and preparedness
Before, during and after an event
When you hear a warning issued please assist other people by passing the information onto neighbours and visitors who may not have heard it or may not have understood the meaning.
- Tune in to warnings for information and advice.
- Regularly check the Bureau of Meteorology website, council’s website and council’s Facebook page for updates.
- Be prepared to act immediately.
- Check for road closures by calling Transport and Main Roads on 131 940 or visit 131940.qld.gov.au and consult council’s website at mackay.qld.gov.au.
- Fill as many water containers as possible, including the bath and sinks.
- If your property is in a low-lying area, prepare sandbags.
- Top up your vehicle’s fuel tank.
- Prepare your property (refer to the relevant checklist in this guide).
- Make sure you have an Emergency Kit, Pet Emergency Kit and Evacuation Kit ready (find friends and relatives in high places outside the evacuation zone).
- Prepare the safest part of your house (usually the bathroom) using strong tables and mattresses and place emergency supplies there.
- Check on elderly or disabled neighbours. Make sure all neighbours are aware of what’s happening.
- Move household items up high.
- If evacuating, turn off electricity, water mains, hot water and gas (and tie down gas bottles).
- Keep an old towel beside the toilet to use as a temporary plug to prevent sewer backflow in low- lying areas.
- Ensure all chemicals that may react with water are within a waterproof container and are moved to a higher level.
- Ensure everyone (especially children) is safe.
- Stay inside in your prepared safe place – remain calm.
- Beware of the calm “eye” of the cyclone, tune in to warnings and do not go outside until you are advised to do so by authorities.
- Remain calm.
- Be aware of hazards.
- Do not attempt to clear trees from powerlines yourself. Instead, call Ergon Energy for advice.
- Refrain from making unnecessary demands on emergency services.
- If you’ve had to evacuate, don’t return home until advised and then use the route recommended.
- Do not eat food which has been in contact with floodwater.
- If flooding has occurred, boil all tap water until water supplies have been declared safe.
- Beware of wildlife which may move to drier areas in your house.
- Do not use gas or electrical appliances that have been flood-affected until they have been checked for safety by qualified personnel.
- Do not let children play in floodwaters as it may be contaminated.
- After a cyclone, inspect ceiling insulation to ensure that batts are still in place (not over downlights as this can cause electrical fires).
- Do not go sightseeing and do not drive or walk through floodwaters.
Please note: State Emergency Services (volunteers) are only required to attend to emergency situations (eg trees on houses or roof damage).
The community is required to attend to and arrange private damage clean-up.
Requests for assistance will be prioritised and response times will be affected during major events. Your patience is appreciated.
Remember, SES personnel are volunteers who leave their homes and family to attend call-outs. The SES are not first responders, such as police, fire or ambulance.