The devastating Tasmanian fires in January 2013 had a lasting impact on all Tasmanians, none more so than those directly impacted by the fires. With summer not far around the corner and the recent bushfires in New South Wales it is a timely reminder to get your bushfire survival plans in order.
Your bushfire survival plan should include:
- steps you are going to take to prepare your home or business in the event of a bushfire;
- if you’re planning to stay, the steps you are going to take to defend your home or business safely; and
- steps you are going to take in order to leave early for a safe place (even if you are planning to stay).
The Tasmanian Fire Services offers a number of publications that can assist you in preparing your bushfire plan this include:
Check out the Tasmanian Fire Service website at http://www.fire.tas.gov.au/Show?pageId=colpreparePlan.
Despite the best laid plans bushfires can still do extreme damage to your property. Therefore, it is important to conduct regular reviews of your insurance needs to make sure you are adequately covered.
You should give consideration to:
- the value of your home and contents, vehicles and buildings, business and your business assets, and the level of cover you need to financially protect them; and
- what coverage you currently have, as well as any exclusions that may be a part of your current insurance policy.
Consider also having your insurance policy numbers close at hand. As well as having an inventory of your contents of your home and business (this may be as simple as saving pictures to your phone or somewhere off site) so it is easier for you to make a list of anything that may have been destroyed or damaged in a bushfire.
Also consider having an emergency management plan which sets out in the event of the unthinkable how you can get back on your feet. The Australian Government has provided a number of tools and resources to get your emergency plan on track. Check out http://www.business.gov.au/BusinessTopics/Emergencymanagementandrecovery/Pages/default.aspx for handy resources and tools.
Be proactive about bushfire safety in order to keep your family and business safe this summer.