22 Nov Article: Are You In The Fire Zones?
As you are aware, the east coast of our country has been battling catastrophic fires for the last few months. Setting up an evacuation plan may seem unneeded due to fires being far away from your home. But fires can and do spread rapid fast. Planning your escape will make the process quicker and safer for yourself and your family if you ever need to leave your home due to a fire.
Are You/Your Family Prepared?
Practicing your escape plan will help you to remember what steps you need to take if you do need to evacuate your home. The speed of fire and the toxicity of smoke interrupts your ability to think quickly.
Consider leaving your keys in a place where your family will remember to retrieve them if you need to leave. Limiting the number of keys needed to unlock/lock your doors, and having locks keyed alike will make the process easier for yourself and your family.
Make sure you sit down with your family, or yourself, and plan out your escape. This is going to make it a lot easier if the time comes where you need to leave, and will save you time. You will know where to go, what to take, and how to remain as safe as possible during the process.
Always listen to Emergency Services advice!!
Keep Yourself/Your Family Safe.
Prepare a list of the things you will take with you during an evacuation and put it somewhere you will always see it (on a fridge, for example). Make sure you don’t take a bulk amount of items as this could alter the process your escape. Taking sentimental items, and important necessities is recommended.
Medication and your medical papers, your pets documentation, legal documentation, insurance documentation, passport etc. All of these documents should be stored in an ‘easy-to-grab’ form, whether it be clear sleeve folders, or a box, they are one of the most important things you should take (if possible to) when you leave. If a fire is close to your home, and the level is at ADVICE, you should have these things already packed and at the door.
Listen to Emergency Instructions.
When emergency crew approach your home and advise yourself and your family to leave, it is important that you listen and take immediate action. Having some items already packed into your vehicle is going to make the evacuation process easier for your family when it comes to leaving your home.
Staying home after being advised to leave immediately, and not listening to the instructions given to you by emergency crew could lead to dangerous causes, or even fatality, for yourself and your family.
If you evacuate your home and have no means of contact to let immediate family know you are safe, don’t worry. Evacuation centres are here to help victims and evacuees, as well as emergency crew, and police. Do not be afraid to approach someone if you need to get into contact with family.
How Can I Help Victims and Firefighters?
If you would like to donate to support our firefighters, victims, and/or wildlife, follow any of the links listed below.
You can make a bank deposit to the NSW RFS directly:
Account Name: NSW Rural Fire Service
Bank: Westpac BSB: 032-001 Account No: 171051
or follow this link https://www.rfs.nsw.gov.au/volunteer/support-your-local-brigade
Redcross Disaster Relief & Recovery
Vinnies NSW Bushire Appeal.
RSPCA Bushfire Appeal.
Aussie Wildlife Bushfire Appeal.
Port Macquarie Koala Hospital.