Tune into Warnings
Print out the Tune into Warnings checklist and wallet emergency card
Everyone needs to understand the risks and the appropriate actions to take in an emergency. Before an emergency happens, ensure that all household members know:
- How to tune into warnings
- Where to access current information
- Details from your Household Emergency Plan and your Evacuation arrangements
- Location of your Emergency Kit
Emergency Services use a range of methods to warn the community about severe weather and other emergencies that require preparation and action at the household level. When warnings are issued you may be directed to:
- Finalise your preparations
- Secure items around your home
- Activate your Emergency Plan
- Shelter in place, or
- Commence evacuation to your predetermined safer location
Warnings are urgent - you will need to act immediately on the information provided.
Importantly, you and your household will need to have already developed your Emergency Plan, Emergency Kit, Evacuation arrangements and prepare your home prior to receiving a warning. Such preparation enables everyone to act quickly on the advice provided in warnings.
- Tune your battery powered radio to your local ABC radio station or your local commercial radio station frequency to listen for weather and warning updates.
- Turn your Television to your local station to watch and listen for warning updates.
- To the Bureau of Meteorology website for weather updates, weather warning and tsunami warning information.
- To the Queensland Disaster Management Services website for information to Be Prepared, Emergency Alert messages issued and current information on disaster events.
- To your local council website for information on local emergency management plans and arrangements including evacuation information and routes.
- For the Standard Emergency Warning Signal (SEWS) used at the beginning of serious emergency warnings.
- For Emergency Alert voice messages to your landline and text messages to your mobile telephone.
- For local community safety announcements (on radio and television) for advice updates and to identify the preferred evacuation routes for your area.
- For sirens and loud hailer announcements, that Emergency Services may use in certain circumstances.
- For Emergency Services personnel who may door-knock your local area to pass on warnings.
- For more information on Tsunami Warnings, phone: 1300 TSUNAMI (1300 878 6264).
- For further information on weather warnings and forecasts, phone 1900 955 360 for the Bureau’s Phone Weather Service (call costs apply).
- Ensure all householders are aware of the warning and advice provided.
- Check on neighbours and friends who may need special assistance.
- Activate your Household Emergency Plan.
- Locate and collect your Emergency Kit.
- Activate and check your Evacuation arrangements and Evacuation Kit if required.
- If you are visiting or holidaying in Queensland, or interstate, and do not have family or friends to shelter with, contact your accommodation manager to identify options for evacuation.
- Keep your wallet emergency card in your wallet or purse for easy reference to access warnings and further information.
- Display your Emergency Plan on the fridge or household notice board, provide copies to household members, relevant friends, family and neighbours and keep a copy in your Emergency Kit.
When warnings are issued for major emergencies, relevant authorities may use the Standard Emergency Warning Signal (SEWS) prior to providing information on the emergency.
SEWS is a wailing siren sound used throughout Australia for serious emergency events such as severe cyclone, bushfire, flood and severe storm. When you hear the signal on radio, television or over the phone via Emergency Alerts, pay careful attention to the message that follows and act immediately on the advice given.
Emergency Alert is a telephone warning system that authorities can use to provide warnings to communities. Emergency Alert can be used to send voice alerts via landline telephones based on the location of the handset, and text alerts to mobile telephones based on the billing address.
It is for use in a range of emergency situations, including extreme weather events and bushfires. You are not charged and will not have to pay for the alert. Importantly you cannot opt out of receiving emergency alerts.
If you receive an Emergency Alert, you need to listen carefully to the advice provided and act immediately. Voice messages will be repeated if you hold the line. You may be directed to finalise preparations, secure items around your home, shelter in place or commence evacuation to your predetermined safer location.
Make extra copies of the completed checklist and wallet card:
- For all household members
- For your family, friends and neighbours
- To display on the refrigerator or notice board
- To include in your Emergency Kit
To learn more about preparing for emergencies and to help your community, consider joining a community emergency service organisation such as the State Emergency Service (SES)
Last updated 9 August 2011