Four simple steps that could save your life in a bush fire

DON'T HESITATE: The decision of whether you'll leave early or stay and defend your home is an essential part of preparing for a bush fire emergency.
DON'T HESITATE: The decision of whether you'll leave early or stay and defend your home is an essential part of preparing for a bush fire emergency.

Getting ready for a bush fire is easier than you think.

The four simple steps to making your Bush Fire Survival Plan are: Discuss, Prepare, Know and Keep.

Where you live is one of the things that determines if both you and your home are at risk of bush fire, and what kind of fire you might experience.

Those who live: close to bush; in an area where grasslands meet built-up areas or homes; along the coast near scrub; on a farm or near paddocks; or on the top of a hill could all be at risk from bush fire.

DISCUSS: One of the most important things to do before a bush fire is to decide what you'll do if one should start. Will you leave early or stay and fight?

If you're leaving where will you go, how will you get there and what will you take?

If you are staying is your home well prepared and do you have everything you need to survive the risk?

PREPARE: Defending your home from a bush fire can be challenging and you will need the right equipment.

Remember, while firefighters and emergency services will do everything they can to help you, there's no guarantee that there will be a fire truck available when you need it.

If you decide to stay with your property, it's your responsibility to be prepared.

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The relevant fire authority in your region will have a checklist of what will need which includes fire fighting equipment and protective clothing, as well as what you need to know to prepare your home for bush fire.

KNOW: You need to keep track of the alert level so you know what you should do. They are: advice - a fire has started but there is no immediate danger so stay up to date in case the situation changes; watch and act - there is a heightened level of threat, conditions are changing and you need to start taking action to protect you and your family; emergency warning - the highest level of bush fire alert means you may be in danger and need to take action immediately.

KEEP: Keep all the key information you may need in one place. Your relevant fire authority can provide you with any apps, websites or phone numbers you may need in a bush fire emergency situation.