So, this winter its pretty bats**t crazy. I don’t think we need to beat around the bush about it. We all saw the incredible storm photos from Sydney, and we had our own Storm Gallery for Adelaide in May that shows you really can’t take a patch of blue sky for granted this season. And it got us thinking, just how prepared are we for this sort of thing?
Update for Thursday, 23 June:
The Bureau of Meteorology South Australian offer are making their priority today to prepare for severe weather, damaging winds and heavy rainfall in the Adelaide Metropolitan, Mount Lofty Ranges, Yorke Peninsula, Kangaroo Island, Upper South East, Lower South East and parts of the Mid North and Murraylands districts.
A ‘vigorous’ cold front has arrived today, accompanied by 50-60km/h winds, with gusts in excess of 90km/h possible. Very heavy rain, mainly about southern coasts and ranges has already hit, and may lead to flash flooding. Already, a wind gust of 111 km/h was observed at Cape Willoughby on Kangaroo Island at 9:25am this morning. If you have the chance, the State Emergency Service advises that people should:
* Move vehicles under cover or away from trees;
* Secure or put away loose items around your property.
* Don’t drive, ride or walk through flood water;
* Keep clear of creeks and storm drains;
* Stay indoors, away from windows, while conditions are severe.
We’ve long had it drummed into us during summer to be prepared for bushfires, but this seems altogether a different sort of beat. According to data released by ServiceSeeking.com.au, who surveyed more than 4000 people following the recent stormy weather in parts of Australia that have been affected by flooding and severe rain, 68 per cent of us don’t have a flood disaster plan in place. And a further 35 per cent of people would have nowhere to live if their house was flooded.
Now, if the current election campaign has taught us anything, stats can be as confusing and appear meaningless. But really, what this boils down to is having a good hard think about whether or not you know what to do in the instance of a flash flood.
The Bureau of Meteorology has advised that extreme weather is expected this evening, 23 June, with the peak rainfall predicted at approximately 5pm and peak tide at close to 6pm.
The City Of Port Adelaide/Enfield Council is already assisting SES to make 3000 sandbags available to those residents at risk of flooding from Wednesday afternoon at the vacant lot at the end of Divett St, Port Adelaide. They’re also door knocking residents at high risk of flooding to advise them and assist with preparations.
So this is serious stuff. And to throw another stat out there, twenty per cent of people with home and contents insurance admit their contents insurance would not cover them in the event of a natural disaster completely destroying their home and all they owned.
So if you are in a vulnerable area, get ready. Those who require assistance with sandbags can contact the Council on 8405 6600. That number will also link you to a response centre for Thursday evening, open until 8pm to provide assistance to where needed. As events unfold, road closures may be in place as well.
If you require immediate assistance though, best to buzz the SES on 132 500 for flood and storm response. And in an emergency, always call 000.
The next warning is due to be issued by 12:45 pm. Warnings are also available through TV and Radio broadcasts, the Bureau’s website at www.bom.gov.au or call 1300 659 215. The Bureau and State Emergency Service would appreciate warnings being broadcast regularly.