Urgent warning to prepare for bushfire season

23 August 2018 Queenslanders have been urged to stop being complacent and to get bushfire prepared as new RACQ research revealed more than half of the State’s homeowners were not prepared for what was forecast to be one of the worst bushfire seasons in years.

RACQ spokesperson Kirsty Clinton said the data showed only 43 percent of homeowners surveyed had taken, or planned, any steps to get bushfire prepared.

“It doesn’t matter where in Queensland you live, you should be acting now to prepare your home for the possibility of a bushfire,” Ms Clinton said.

“Bushfire season typically begins on the first of September, but this year’s dry, windy conditions have seen more than 100 vegetation fires already rage around the State.

“Homeowners should start preparing their properties now – that means clearing gutters, trimming back trees, and removing excess foliage and debris from around the yard.”

Ms Clinton said RACQ had received almost 1,000 insurance claims in the last three years due to fire damage, and homeowners needed to ensure they had a bushfire plan and communicated it with friends and family.

“Bushfires move quickly and are unpredictable. If one is headed your way, it’ll be too late to decide what to do –  you should be immediately enacting your pre-prepared bushfire plan,” she said.

“Unfortunately, our research shows only one third of Queenslanders have a plan, and concerningly many forget to share this with friends and family.

“Now’s the time to decide if you’ll stay and fight a fire or pack up and leave.

“Discuss with your family where you’ll meet if separated when an emergency hits, who’ll pick up kids or pets, and where you’ll stay.”