This is the sort of damage a major storm can cause in the Byron Shire.
This is the sort of damage a major storm can cause in the Byron Shire.

Protect yourself this storm season

It’s generally regarded that the months between September and March are when our region experiences the most severe thunderstorms. This week’s rain is a practical reminder.


Given the havoc storms can wreak, authorities are urging home owners to take precautions.


The Mullumbimby SES recommends householders put together an emergency kit of battery-powered radio, torch, batteries and candles.


It also recommends people should have a waterproof, snap-lock bag for important documents.


Country Energy urges people to have an emergency kit ready this storm season in the event an extended unplanned power supply interruption occurs.


Regional general manager Far North Coast, Richard Wake, said being prepared for any unplanned supply interruption would help people manage the situation while Country Energy employees worked to restore power.
 

“Already this year we’ve experienced some wild winds and weather across the State – storms that have wreaked terrible damage on the power network – reinforcing that we can’t be complacent about the dangers they present and of the need to be prepared,” Mr Wake said.


Country Energy suggests a storm season emergency kit includes:


* First aid kit and instructions


* Torch and batteries


* Candles and matches


* Portable battery-powered radio with extra batteries to keep you informed on the status of the power interruption
 

* Non-perishable food items and bottled water


* Manually operated can opener


* List of emergency contact numbers including Country Energy’s 13 20 80 number


* At least one telephone that doesn’t work off mains power (only use the telephone once the storm has passed) and/or prepaid phone cards and coins for phone calls.
 

“Ensure that every member of the house knows where the emergency kit is located, and what to do in the case of an emergency,” Mr Wake said.


 “And check the contents of the kit regularly to ensure that everything is in working order and the kit is complete.”
Country Energy encourages customers to contact 13 20 80 in the event of a supply interruption.


“People also need to be aware of any fallen powerlines, damaged poles or trees touching the electricity network and remember to keep at least eight metres away from them as they could be energised and pose a real danger,” Mr Wake said.


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